This is 16 in a series of 50 posts we are putting out throughout the years in anticipation of the celebration of our 50th Anniversary in 2015. We welcome your feedback and suggestions for the top things YOU love about Minnesota as well!
As the theme song from one of our local news stations depicts, “going to the state fair, see you there”, the Minnesota State Fair is a staple for all Minnesotans! There is definitely something to do for everyone at our great Minnesota get-together. We have rides, events, shows, livestock, TV and radio performances, farm equipment, extreme sports, contests, oh and a little bit of food!
The Minnesota State Fair started in 1859; one year after Minnesota received its statehood. The original location was near what is now Downtown Minneapolis, but the fair would travel from venue to venue every year. It made stops in Red Wing, Winona, St. Paul, and Owatonna. The fair found its permanent location in 1885. The area where it is located is known as Midway, as its midway between Minneapolis and St. Paul. The fair grounds are 320 acres and we are proud to say it’s one of the largest state fairs in the country.
Originally the fair was heavily Agricultural based, though slowly other attractions have taken seed. Now the largest attracting source is the food. There are 310 food vendors at this year’s fair, most of which put something on a stick! You can find more foods on a stick at our state fair…well than you can shake a stick at! One of my favorite foods, and usually a two or three time stop, is the pickle dog (pictured below with my good friend Jenny). How delicious!
There is one sad note when we Minnesotans think about our great state fair, the end of summer. Our fair is the unofficial, official end of summer. Kids go back to school, autumn begins to set in, and we get ready for our long winter ahead. Maybe this is why the fair is so food based? We are done with swim suit season and ready to put on that extra “layer” for winter!
What are your favorite things about the state fair or your state’s fair?