Minnesota State Fair attendance far below 2019 record

The Minnesota State Fair wrapped up its 12-day run with total attendance of about 1.3 million, well below usual numbers as the delta variant kept many fairgoers away.

Final attendance was about 60 percent of 2019’s record attendance of 2.1 million.

The coronavirus wiped out the 2020 state fair, and this year’s comeback returned just as the delta variant was heating up. Rainy weather also held crowds down on some days.

Meanwhile, sheriff’s officials say law enforcement officers used a chemical spray to disperse a crowd creating a disturbance at the main gate to the fair as it was drawing to a close. Authorities did not say how big the crowd was, whether there were any arrests or injuries, or what led to the disturbance.

A Ramsey County Sheriff’s official say one man who was part of the disturbance Monday night had a gun, but there was no indication that he fired it.

A Ramsey County judge recently rejected a request by a gun owners group for a temporary injunction to require State Fair officials to allow permit holders to carry weapons on the fairgrounds.