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Sights from the 2023 Great Minnesota Get Together

The Minnesota State Fair has something for everyone, from food and animals to music and old tractors and just about anything else you can imagine.

Jen Koukol, Digital Editor

September 6, 2023

24 Slides

Each year on opening day, my daughter and I hop the bus and head to the Minnesota State Fair for the day. We map out the foods we want to try, attractions we want to see and cover the grounds. This year, the first day was hot, but it didn't keep more than 106,000 people from walking through the gates. This year, 1.8 million people attended the fair.

We learned some state fair history, ate some new foods and walked the buildings and grounds for 10 hours to make sure we didn't miss our favorite exhibits.

Some fun facts we learned this year, taking the history of the Minnesota State Fair in the heritage building at the West End Market:

  • 1859 was the first Minnesota State Fair. It was held in Minneapolis.

  • 1885 was the first year of the state fair on the current grounds.

  • The state fair has been cancelled 6 different years:

  • 1861 and 1862 due to the Civil and Dakota wars

  • 1893 due to scheduling conflicts with the Chicago Worlds Fair

  • 1945 due to wartime fuel shortages

  • 1946 due to the polio epidemic

  • 2020 due to the global COVID pandemic

About the Author(s)

Jen Koukol

Digital Editor

Jen grew up in south-central Minnesota and graduated from Minnesota State University, Mankato, with a degree in mass communications. She served as a communications specialist for the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association and Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, and was a book editor before joining the Corn & Soybean Digest staff.

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