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It was a politically neutral site, being about halfway between Minneapolis and St. The fair first opened its doors there on September 7, The site was then acres 85 ha , but now stands at acres ha.

One of the first annual events to occur is the creation of a butter sculpture. Part of the job involves posing for several hours in a walk-in, glass-walled refrigerator as a pound 41 kg block of butter is carved into a head with her likeness.

Butter makers started sculpting their products at the fair as far back as , although the head-sculpting tradition did not begin until The main entrance to the fair from Snelling Avenue heads onto a road named Dan Patch Avenue for a pacer horse who won every race he ran in from to when he was retired.

In the Spanish American War broke out. The states were requested to provide volunteers and Minnesota quickly had enough to form four Regiments. They were initially numbered 1—4, but GAR veterans felt that they should continue the numbering from the Civil War and they became the 12th—15th Minnesota Infantry Regiments. All four were mustered and organized on the State Fair Grounds. One of the most significant dates in the fair’s history was September 2, , when then- Vice President Theodore Roosevelt was visiting and first uttered the famous phrase, «Speak softly and carry a big stick.

In , attendance was well over a million people and the record day that year was about , visitors. By , attendance neared 2 million and the record day was about a quarter-million people. The overall attendance record of 2,, was set along with an all-time single-day attendance record of , on the second Saturday. Since , the fair has run annually except for six different years.

In and , the fair was not held because of the Civil War and the Dakota War of Scheduling issues between the fair and the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago , Illinois caused the fair to be cancelled. The fair was not held in , as fuel was in short supply due to World War II and it was again cancelled in because of an outbreak of polio. The fair was most recently cancelled in , this time due to the COVID pandemic with the decision announced on May 22, Fair Manager, Jerry Hammer, had previously stated that the fair would not be a postponed or scaled-back event; it would either run unchanged or be cancelled.

There’s not time. To make up for ‘s cancellation, the fair management hosted its first-ever spring event entitled «Kickoff To Summer» featuring scaled-back concessions and attractions. It also served as a test to the fair’s eventual return in The «Kickoff to Summer» event returned in after positive reception in A large portion of the Fairgrounds are occupied by livestock barns where various farm animals are displayed.

The animals and their owners take part in livestock shows to compete for awards. Most of the shows take place in the coliseum, a large indoor arena on the fairgrounds. The Coliseum was constructed to replace the Hippodrome, which was rendered structurally unsound during its use as a Propeller Plant by the A. No people were seriously injured in the mishap. Foods served at the annual Minnesota State Fair have traditionally included watermelon pickles, baked beans , buffalo burgers, deep-fried cheese curds, cotton candy , glazed ham, Australian battered potatoes and homemade apple pie.

Many foods at the fair are deep-fried or come on a stick, from the classic corn dog to alligator-on-a-stick, lobster-on-a-stick, and deep-fried candy bar on a stick. New to the fair in was hotdish on a stick, a variant of a classic staple of Minnesotan cuisine. In , one new food was spaghetti on a stick. Machinery Hill is a large area of the fairgrounds. For several decades, it held the largest annual display of farm equipment in the world, with many companies showing off tractors , combines , and various attachments.

However, modern displays generally focus on cars , trucks, lawn mowers , hot tubs and recreational machines like motorbikes. Farm implement dealers tend to direct their efforts to more targeted «farm shows,» abandoning the State Fair to more urban or suburban types of exhibitors. Machinery Hill also contains an interactive exhibit for kids called Little Farm Hands.

In this exhibit, children get to experience life on the farm from planting seeds to selling goods at the farmers market. Machinery Hill is gradually being rebranded as «The North End.

The Grandstand is a large outdoor concert hall that also features three floors of interior exhibition space. It hosts the largest of the fair’s concerts and until was also the site of stock car races run on a small oval track. Fairgoers watch the year’s most popular cat videos and memes and award the best videos with cat trophies, the most prized being the Golden Kitty. The fair displays an annual art exhibition that is the result of a juried competition of works of fine art. Media include watercolor, oil, and acrylic paintings, photographs, sculptures, pastels, ceramics, glass, and textiles.

Entrants must be living residents of the state. In , a total of 2, pieces were submitted, and works were accepted. One unusual display at the fair consists of the entrants in the crop art competition. The artwork must be made of plant matter seeds, stems, flowers, fruit, etc. After winning nine purple ribbons, she stopped competing, but continued displaying her work at the fair.

There are competitions in dozens of categories in needlecraft , garment-making, wood-working, models , painting, doll-making, taxidermy , stamp-collecting, scrapbooking , baking, canning , and others. The annual 5 km run begins on the fairgrounds, winds its way through the Saint Paul campus of the University of Minnesota and the Saint Anthony Park neighborhood, and ends back at the fairgrounds.

Contests include herdsmanship, horse showmanship , judging teams, public presentations and county club exhibits. Livestock displays include beef and dairy cattle, dairy and market goats, poultry chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, and pigeons , rabbits, Domestic sheep , and swine.

The 4-H building was opened and dedicated in [37] and about , state fairgoers visit it every year. In recent years the Progress Center has been housing the Eco Experience exhibit, which features activities and exhibits including the design and construction of an eco-friendly house, a rain garden , exhibits addressing climate change , energy conservation , renewable energy , biodiesel fuel and vehicles, and organic farming.

In Austin McFadden, a Michigan entrepreneur approached the Fair about building the first roller coaster on the Fair grounds and was turned down. They did. The Carousel became a State Fair institution that all of Minnesota thought belonged to the fair grounds. It had no sign on it indicating its ownership was not public while being installed on public land.

Without any disclosure in the Fair’s board refused to extend the Carousel’s lease. Every year there are many musical venues. There are also many free entertainment venues with local bands and a selection of national acts. In , Boyz II Men performed two nights at one of the free venues.

There are several rides that are permanent fixtures at the fair, including the Giant Slide, on which fairgoers ride down a large fiberglass slide on burlap sacks. The Skyride is an aerial lift ride that carries fairgoers across the grounds in a gondola. Paul area. There is also a haunted house which has been around since and is located on Judson Ave.

The fair’s oldest existing ride, Ye Old Mill opened in , is located near the food building. It is a » tunnel of love «-style ride for all ages. The Midway is a carnival-like setting that contains most of the rides at the State Fair. The attractions include several funhouses, roller coasters and other thrill rides as well as numerous games of skill.

It is located across the street from the Midway, but is not a part of it. Kidway is the carnival area on the fairgrounds geared toward children.

Kidway is located between Dan Patch and Wright Avenues on the north end of the fairgrounds. The management of the fair is handled by the board of managers.

The state fair has not accepted governmental funds since Revenue from the fair is reinvested into maintenance and the next year’s fair. The Minnesota State Fair Foundation is an organization that works to improve and preserves historic state fair buildings. The foundation is a c 3 organization, and also supports State Fair agricultural, scientific and educational programs.

Admission to the Fair Everyone entering the fairgrounds must present a valid ticket […]. Party Together! Located just east of the Grandstand, this by-reservation-only picnic area welcomes groups, rain or shine. A great place for company picnics, appreciation dinners, class reunions, anniversary parties or family celebrations! Private, covered pavilion event space available between 8 a. History Walking Tour Brochure 4-H Building This magnificent three-story, monolithic concrete structure commands a view of the entire fairgrounds and surrounding vicinity.

Built […]. After three years of territorial fairs, the first Minnesota State Fair was held in near what became downtown Minneapolis. This was a year after Minnesota was granted statehood. In the […]. What is the oldest food concession on the fairgrounds? General Fairgrounds Admission 7 a. In the event of severe weather at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, law enforcement and staff will work closely to ensure the safety of all.

If you are on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds when severe weather becomes imminent: During the State Fair, we use a WEA wireless emergency alert system, an official, national alert system. This […]. Visiting with Young Children Use these tips to plan your visit with young fair fans. Ways to Save Admission Children 4 and under are always free — every day! Admission for kids ages is discounted on these days when you purchase tickets at the gate: Opening Day, Aug.

Merge onto Highway 36 East via Exit 23B on the left. Exit onto Snelling Avenue South. Exit on Snelling Avenue, then turn left and head north. Or take IE north to I west. Exit on Snelling […]. Campground Registrations for are full.

Please email or call the campground office to be placed on the waiting list. Information is subject to change. Please check back periodically for updates. The Minnesota State Fair Foundation is the c 3 nonprofit organization that preserves and improves the historic Minnesota State Fairgrounds, and supports State Fair agricultural, scientific and educational programs.

To learn more about the Foundation, its impact and how to contribute, visit msffoundation. Looking for ways to get your State Fair shopping fix? Want to have a small piece of the Minnesota State Fair in your home? Check out these options! Visit this site to get your hands on exclusive Minnesota State […]. Your privacy is important to the Minnesota State Fair. To better protect your privacy we provide this notice explaining our online information practices and the choices you can make about the way your information is collected and used.

To make this notice easy to find, we make it available on our homepage. The Information We […]. From goods, gadgets and gear to crafts, collectibles and confections, the hundreds of vendors on the fairgrounds offer exceptional merchandise and stellar savings.

The Minnesota State Fair announces 47 brand-new beverages premiering or found only at the fair. In addition, there will be 43 returning beverages found only at the Great Minnesota Get-Together.

Install it before coming to the Minnesota State Fair; our cutting-edge app allows you to quickly search food, merchandise and the schedule even if you do not have a good cell or Wi-Fi connection while […]. Goal of Accessibility for All The Minnesota State Fair strives to provide a positive and inclusive customer experience by enabling all of our customers to gather information and transact business through our website.

Whether you are using assistive technologies such as a screen reader, magnifier, voice recognition software or captions for videos, our goal is […]. Minnesota State Fair Storage Information We are no longer accepting appointment forms for the storage season.

If you are waiting on confirmation of your acceptance, please check your bank account to see if you check has been cashed. If it has been […].



New Attraction: Updated Fair Hours | Minnesota State Fair.Minnesota State Fair | Visit Saint Paul


Most vendors are open from 9 a. To find vendors open before 9 a. Alcohol sales during the fair are 9 a. Most of the food vendors, although not a requirement, will post allergy warnings, particularly those pertaining to nut issues, but we encourage fair guests to inquire about specific concerns with each vendor. Consider visiting the Health Fair 11 exhibit at the fair, which offers free or low-cost health screenings, as well as information to help visitors navigate and safely enjoy the fair.

Use the State Fair Finder to check out the complete menus of the nearly food vendors at the fair. Fair guests are welcome to bring outside food and drinks. However, no alcoholic beverages may be brought into the fair. Coolers are permitted, but will be searched at entrances. Coolers are not permitted in the Grandstand concert venue.

Some food vendors accept credit cards, but we do recommend bringing cash, as not all vendors do. Twin Cities ROCK, an independent nonprofit organization, compiles a list of gluten-free fair food options based on a questionnaire sent to food and beverage vendors. You can pick up a list at Health Fair 11 on Cooper Street, any information booth, or check it out here once available. We do not maintain a list of specifically vegetarian or vegan foods; you can, however, find concessionaires who sell specific foods at the State Fair by using the Fair Finder.

Note: This database is not comprehensive; there may be other vendors who offer vegan or vegetarian options. We definitely encourage all State Fair guests to talk to the vendors, as they are the most knowledgeable about their food. We have quite the list of tasty Official New Foods! When you get to the fair, stop by an information booth to learn about all of the places to find water on the grounds, including drinking fountains, water bottle-filling stations, a list of vendors handing out free water and more.

Fair FAQ. Can I still enjoy the fair with food allergies? Can I bring my own food and beverage to the fair? Do food vendors accept credit cards?

Does the fair provide a list of gluten-free food items? Does the fair provide or a list of vegetarian or vegan food items? What new foods will be at the fair this year? Where are water bottle filling stations and drinking fountains located?


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