Meet the Unusual Animals of the State Fair of Texas

DALLAS -- Big Tex is once again welcoming folks to Fair Park for all the games, rides, and food the State Fair of Texas has to offer.

Among the guests will be plenty of animals too, and not just the ones you might expect.

For example, the Children's Health Barnyard, which is technically a petting zoo, but far beyond what you might expect.

"We're gonna have probably 30-40 different species in here," said Monte McClurg, who works there.  "We're gonna have a baby giraffe, we've got some kangaroos here.  And of course, we're gonna have baby goats, we're gonna have lots of baby goats. This is, as far as I know, the biggest petting zoo ever, anywhere, ever put on, right here at the State Fair of Texas."

The Barnyard puts the "zoo" in "petting zoo" alright, but what if you're looking for something a little less cute and cuddly?

The Texas Discovery Garden has you covered. It's known for its butterflies. There are hundreds in its indoor garden, but it also has snakes!  And lots of peace and quiet to boot.

"Seven and a half acres, right underneath the Ferris Wheel, so you can't miss us," said Sarah Gardner. "It's kinda nice to come out here and relax, and then go back out there and enjoy a ride."

Yeah, safe to say there's more to this party than just the deep-fried goodness.  And it all starts tomorrow, when the gates open for another year.