Great MN Get-together

Whether you call it the MN State Fair, the Great MN Get-Together (or even the Sweat-Together), it is such a fantastic event.  I just love it.  A little tiny part of me believes that it wouldn’t go on without me:)


Our family, 2 years ago.

When I was 18, I spent all 12 days there as a state 4-H ambassador.  I won’t be there for the duration this year, from August 22-September 2.  Vince and Liv start school on the 22nd of August (gasp), so it may be tricky to find a day but I’m determined to make it work.  There are so many wonderful things to DO and so many wonderful things to EAT.


Be sure to check out the Moo Booth. Lots of learning for kids AND adults in that corner of the cattle barn.

There is even royalty at the MN State Fair.  The 60th Princess Kay of the Milky Way (to be crowned the evening before the fair begins) will be reigning over the State Fair this year, telling her story of growing up on her family’s farm and reminding everyone of the importance of dairy in a healthy diet.  My daughter met the 58th Princess Kay Mary Zahurones, who happens to be from my hometown of Pierz, 2 years ago.


We went to the old Empire Commons, now called the Dairy Building, to watch a dairy princess have her likeness carved in a 90-pound block of butter, as well as to enjoy a raspberry malt. Look who we found!

So now, start making plans.  You have got to get there!  I can help. With the help of Midwest Dairy, I am running my first ever give-away:  4 free tickets to the State Fair and 4 free malts at the Dairy Goodness Bar — a $60 value.  All you do to sign up is click the link below, and it will direct you to comment on my blog about your favorite things to do at the State Fair.  Be sure to comment on MY BLOG, and not on my facebook page.  Feel free to share the link to my blog with your friends, so they have an opportunity to win as well.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


38 thoughts on “Great MN Get-together

  1. Raspberry Malts, Deep Fried Pickles, French Meadow Scones (with peaches)…people watching, animal viewing, rodeo, Smoked Turkey Sandwich, all-you-can-drink milk, butter carvings, quilts, 4-H building, live demonstrations, free concerts….

  2. My favorite thing to do at the state fair has always been the haunted house. When I was young I got lost in the thing and a couple college aged kids helped me out. It’s like I have to prove I can’t “beat it” every time I go the state fair.

  3. I love to get some corn fritters and sit and listen to some free music!! My favorite thing to do with the kiddos is to go to the various animal barns and learn about all the different farm animals!

  4. I so need to get back to the state fair! It’s been far to long! See old friends working, show my daughter the butter carvings! I miss my 4h days, spending the time camping with family- before I was old enough to earn a trip or be an ambassador!

    Love your blog Rita! I think I will be serving shakes with Steve next weekend for St Mary’s!

  5. Every year, my mom and I attend The State Fair, and we have made many memories. Heritage square is a must stop, were we get our personalized Christmas ornaments for the year. The Cream Puff stand is a tradition for us too!

  6. I have great memories of staying at the 4-H Hilton when I was young. My friends and I scoped out every inch of the fair during the days we were there. I was also fortunate enough to have my likeness carved in butter…. a dream come true for a dairy farmer’s daughter. : ) So, I enjoy visiting the 4-H building and always have a malt as soon as I get to the fair. I love relaxing at the Band Shell while listening to some good music and watching people enjoy themselves. The Miracle of Birth center is one of the best additions to the fair!

  7. many years I spent 12 days at the fair and loved every minute of it. haven’t been there in a few years but would have to get a shake from the Dairy Bar and a rib tickler sandwich from the end of the dairy barn. many great memories and friends were made there

  8. 4-H Dairy Show, All you Can Drink Milk Stand, Malts and Chocolate Chip Cookies! Staying in the 4-H dorms – something interesting always happens!

  9. The home depot things to make with the kids, livestock shows, the FOOD, watching the people, the free items from the different booths, and seeing all of the sales people giving their sales pitches! I also like to watch the State 4-H Arts In.

  10. I love catching the Corn Art when I’m at the fair. It’s odd, amazing, beautiful, hilarious, and every other adjective, really. People are so creative and I love seeing that. I will also admit that even though I’m an adult, and have been for a while, I do still get a huge kick out of the rides, particularly the gravity wheel. Everyone deserves to feel like a kid again every now and again. ;-0

  11. Have been to the state fair once with Colby when he was 4 months old… So this time I’m going to take it all in.

  12. Rita, of course, anything that has to do with dairy is the best part of the fair. Secretly, I like to go up to the Agriculture building and look at all of the Christmas trees!

  13. The goat show, of course! Our favorite activity has to be people watching with our homemade State Fair Bingo cards, or our “People of the State Fair” photo contest. Favorite foods include the Great Big Turkey Sandwich and Sweet Martha’s Cookies!

  14. Where to begin?! MNSF has brought me SO many great memories, smiles & troubles over the last 20+ years. I still can’t believe I went about 5 years w/o being there after we moved up north. I think back to h.s. & college when i was there all 13 days. No way could I pull that off now! Thinking back to seeing you guys there a few years ago and makes me realize that’s probably the best thing about State Fair, seeing friends you really enjoy but live too far away from to visit with regularly.

  15. My first time to the Minnesota State Fair was on my honeymoon 38 years ago. Still a favorite place to be in August! I have come to appreciate Machinery Hill (that is break time for me) I just love the fair so do my children and grandchildren.

  16. When I go back I like to catch either the Arts In performance or the Fashion Review. I love looking at all the exhibits in the 4-H and Fine Arts buildings! On the food front I have to have a Pronto Pup, big bucket of French Fries and, of course, a milk shake from the Moo Booth. I went to the fair 13 years in a row, spent my Ambie year there for the duration, and one summer working there too for the 4-H Foundation. Really hoping to go back this year too!

  17. I have only been to this fair once and it was 20 years ago! I do remember listening to some great music on the free stage though.

  18. I think I entered your contest but I couldn’t figure out how to leave a comment in that process for the life of me. I love the Bazaar and Heritage centers. The 4-H building (craft area) is always a must stop for me, then followed by machinery hill. 😉

  19. Too bad I missed your contest! My favorite memory of the MN State Fair is when we took on the role of Robin Hood in the dairy barn when we were herdsmen for Morrison Co. Remember that?

    • I think back to that time often. When I judge county fairs, I can tell which kids are thought of as leaders, and how the younger kids respect them so much. It meant so much to me at that time in my life. Those were the days!

  20. its a bittersweet year… they are removing “Heritage square” after this fair, Its not flashy, its a snapshot of the past, with the state fair museum, the historical state fair newspaper, the old cars that raced at the grandstand, thats my favorite memory,…

  21. Your friend Gretchen O’Donnell directed me to your blog, so here I am. By way of introduction, I grew up on a Redwood County dairy farm but have lived in Faribault for the past 31 years. I blog at Minnesota Prairie Roots and Gretchen and I have met, in person, twice. She and her family are the best.

    As I was reading this post, I noted that you are originally from Pierz. My husband grew up on a dairy farm southeast of Buckman and graduated from Healy High School in Pierz. That would be back in 1974, long before your time. But anyway, just wanted to share that connection to your hometown.

    • Minnesota Prairie Roots, thanks for stopping by. I often read your comments on Gretchen’s blog,, and remember when you did a guest post for her. Also, I just have to say that I can’t begin to fathom how you blog daily. Wow!
      It is a small world, isn’t it? How fun to find out that you are rooted as a dairy girl, and your husband grew up in the same school district as I did. Gretchen and her family are so wonderful, witty, and kind. I have always loved to read posts from her blog, and will have to begin to follow yours as well.

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