One of the most anticipated events of the year officially kicks off today! It's opening day of The Great New York State Fair.

Whether it's the wine slushies, the crazy food choices and free summer concerts at Chevy Court there is something for everyone at The Fair.

New to the fairgrounds this year is The Expo Center. At The Expo Center, fairgoers will have the opportunity on opening day to meet former NHL hockey stars. From 10 a.m. – Noon, ex-Sabres Larry Playfair and Cody McCormick and retired Islander Pat Flatley will sign autographs and meet hockey fans inside the Expo Center. The day will conclude with free open skating for any fairgoer. Skates are available free of charge.

Here is a schedule of events for The Expo Center:

  • Curling sessions open to fairgoers Thursday and Friday, Aug. 23 – 24;
  • A two-day broomball tournament featuring teams from as far away as North Carolina, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 25 – 26;
  • A hockey tournament among police department teams, Monday, Aug. 27;
  • A hockey tournament among fire department teams, Tuesday, Aug. 28;
  • A speed skating tournament, Wednesday, Aug. 29;
  • A sled hockey tournament and an opportunity for fairgoers to try sled hockey, Thursday, Aug. 30;
  • A figure skating tournament during the day on Friday, Aug. 31;
  • An appearance by the Hanson Brothers, characters in the classic hockey comedy “Slap Shot,” followed by a screening of the movie in the evening on Aug. 31;
  • A two day youth hockey tournament Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 1 – 2;
  • A wedding on ice at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 2;
  • A silent disco on ice at 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 2;
  • More youth hockey and sled hockey on Monday, Sept. 3.

Also new to The Fair this year is additional parking options, paved parking lots and real-time traffic information updates from the NYSDOT. Travelers are encouraged to use the 511NY app.

So whether you're seeing a free concert, riding rides at the Midway or just wanting to people watch take time to enjoy The Great New York State Fair.