Friday, August 22, 2014

Our State Fair

The Minnesota State Fair is a big deal. It runs for 10 days through Labor Day with a total attendance around 1.8 million.

This morning, I was one of those attendees.

I'm not one for crowds, or food on a stick, or animal competitions. But I do like to drop in on the Fair every few years to check out some of my old favorites.

It's the strong continuity with the past that gets me. On today's visit, I was seeing the same things I had seen on my first visit, a third of a century ago.

I first headed straight to the Dairy Barn.

Here, Princess Kay of the Milky Way, the reigning dairy princess, and the runners-up, are immortalized, at least for the duration of the fair, as butter sculptures.

Blocks of butter waiting to be turned into sculptures
Sculptor and subject sit in a refrigerated booth with a slowly revolving floor. It takes several hours to create one head-and-shoulders sculpture.

I walked through some of the animal barns where 4-H kids were lovingly tending their prized animals. I do not want to be present when their animals are auctioned off.

Then, it was on to the competitive cake displays, safely behind glass.

By now, I'd had my State Fair fix, so I headed back to the bicycle corral and cycled home.

It was too early in the day to try beer on a stick

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