The gates are closed on the Minnesota State Fair
That’s a wrap – on summer and the Great Minnesota Get-Together. Organizers say that over 1.8 million people attended the 12-day Minnesota State Fair. It was the sixth best-attended fair in Minnesota history. Fun fact, there were 156 newborn animals welcomed during the 2023 Fair, according to the award-winning CHS Miracle of Birth Center. This includes 122 piglets, 10 calves and 24 lambs.
“This was my first fair as CEO, and I was more awe-inspired by the dedication of so many than I could have imagined – the dedication of fair fans, staff, volunteers, vendors, livestock exhibitors, competitors, safety and security partners and so many others who went above and beyond to be a part of an amazing fair experience despite some challenging temperatures,” the fair’s CEO Renee Alexander said in a press release. “All of us across the state came together to celebrate one of the best Great Minnesota Get-Togethers.”
Visit mnstatefair.org/about-the-fair/attendance for 2023 attendance numbers.
According to organizers the agricultural and creative competitions drew more than 33,000 entries this year. Trophies and ribbons were handed out in each category and fair officials say there was nearly $2 million in prize money. Competitions included livestock, horses, school projects, dog trials, baked and canned goods, fruit, vegetables, crafts, bee and honey products, fine arts, farm crops, flowers, butter, cheese and more.
The Minnesota State Fair’s Fine Arts Exhibition featured the largest juried art show in the state, with the 2023 People’s Choice Award – Adults’ Choice going to “Everlasting,” an oil on canvas piece by Madelynn Hughes of Blaine, Minn. Brian Berle of Shakopee, Minn., won the Kids’ Choice Award for “Bulldog,” a welded metal sculpture.
Organizers say the Purple Ribbon Auction on Saturday, Aug. 26, set 14 new record prices and raised more than $1,220,000 for the 115 4-H members who participated in the auction. Fair officials say 58 4-H youth participants were awarded $140,000 in scholarships.
Emma Kuball of Waterville, Minn., representing Rice County, was crowned the 70th Princess Kay of the Milky Way and will serve as the official goodwill ambassador for nearly 2,500 Minnesota dairy farm families this year.
For competition results in Ag-Hort Bee, Creative Activities and K-12 competitions visit: mnstatefair.org/competitions/
Entertainment was popular at the Minnesota State Fair with 110,543 people attending the shows in the Grandstand, with nearly 4,000 fans cheering on the amateur talent in the state at the 50th Annual MSF Amateur Talent Contest Finals held Sept. 3, at the Grandstand.
The Minnesota State Fair showcases Minnesota’s finest agriculture, art and industry, fun and food. The 2024 Minnesota State Fair will run Aug. 22 through Labor Day, Sept. 2. Visit mnstatefair.org for more information.