Of all the draws that make the Great New York State Fair truly Great year after year, the Chevy Concert Series has to be the biggest. It was proven again just this week with rapper Nelly breaking the Fair concert crowd record. So who are the Fair's other enormous artists through its modern history?

Smaller and growing acts have typically played the Court Stage, while big headlining acts were reserved for grandstand concerts from 1978 until 2016. Today, the larger free concerts are at Chevy Park Stage, but the right Chevy Court show can still pack in tremendous crowds.

Bigger Than MSG

The smallest crowd to make the Top 20 was 28,400. For comparison's sake, Madison Square Garden has a capacity of 20,789. Nelly performed this year to the Fair's largest crowd ever of 43,000; the NY Mets' Citi Field has a capacity of 41,922. One artist still on the list held the biggest crowd record for nearly forty years.

Because shows are free with admission, the Great New York State Fair has accurate estimates of how many fans were in attendance by breaking down the crowd into grids. The main seating area, lawns, and paved areas are all taken into account, and gives the Fair a five percent margin of error.

The 20 Largest Great New York State Fair Concert Crowds

From pop to rap to country to rock, these are the acts who have brought out the biggest crowds at the Great New York State Fair for the last 50 years. (From NYS Fair data sourced by Syracuse.com)

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