New Event Venue on the Kansas State Fairgrounds

The Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation and Kansas State Fair hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the “1861 Club”, the new event venue being built by the Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation on the Kansas State Fairgrounds.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Thursday, September 7 for the new event venue being built by Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation on the Kansas State Fairgrounds with members of both the Foundation Board and the Kansas State Fair Board participating. The new venue will be a wonderful asset to the Kansas State Fairgrounds, providing a high-quality event venue available for year-round use with the capacity of approximately 400 people in a banquet setting, plus 3 small conference rooms available for meetings, breakouts, or dressing rooms.

The name for the venue will be “1861 Club” commemorating the year Kansas became a state and utilizing emblems of the great state of Kansas in the venue logo with the bison and shafts of wheat.

The 1861 Club will be operated and managed by the Foundation as a food and beverage venue during the Kansas State Fair. The Foundation will handle the bookings for the venue for all non-fair events such as corporate events, weddings, small concerts, or special events.

The goal is for the venue to provide a year-round revenue stream for the Foundation and to provide additional financial resources for making improvements to the Kansas State Fairgrounds by the Foundation.

The 1861 Club will feature 30-foot ceilings at the peak, with heavy timber-style frame, a wood ceiling, stone accents, large glass windows in the grand entry hall and glass folding doors opening onto a large covered patio area. The 1861 Club will create a larger-than-life atmosphere for the grandest events and activities. The venue will have a state-of-the-art catering kitchen and beverage area with a large walk-in cooler. This beautiful facility will have adjustable lighting options, and built-in sound and audio-visual equipment to handle most meetings and events.

The 1861 Club will be open as a food and beverage venue for the 2024 Kansas State Fair. The first opportunity to book the 1861 Club for a private event was sold at Boots and Bling 2023. The calendar for additional venue bookings will open on February 1, 2024. Updates and information will be available on the Foundation’s website or in future issues of the First Friday E-Updates. For information, contact the Foundation office at or call 620-615-7388.

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