The following is a sampling of special days and events happening at the Minnesota State Fair. Use the Fun Finder or daily schedules for a complete list of everything to do at this year's Great Minnesota Get-Together! Information subject to change.
Today's Deals: Reduced admission at the gate - Adults (13-64) $12; Kids (5-12) $9. Many merchandise and food vendors offer special Thrifty Thursday bargains for all fair guests.
STEM Day at Dan Patch Park (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.): The Land of 10,000 Lakes is home to incomparable opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics! Get an up-close look at intriguing, interactive adventures brought to the fair by more than 30 organizations in the Minnesota STEM Network, an initiative of SciMathMN, including robots, rocketry, computer coding and more designed for children of all ages. On the Dan Patch Park Stage, engaging presentations feature the University of Minnesota Raptor Center, Physics Force, the Bakken Museum, America's Fun Science and more.
Opening Ceremony: At 10:15 a.m. at the Leinie Lodge Bandshell, State Fair Executive Vice President Jerry Hammer and President Sharon Wessel declare the State Fair officially open at the Opening Ceremony with the national anthem and a flag raising by State Fair Police.
Today's Deals: Early Bird specials are offered until 1 p.m. on Mighty Midway and Kidway rides & games.
Around the fairgrounds: The 19th annual fun-filled, action-packed Governor's Fire Prevention Day is the largest fire-prevention education event in the world. Opportunities for families include learning about fire-safe behavior, fire prevention, safe escape from a fire, proper use of a fire extinguisher, how to prepare for an emergency, as well as technological improvements in burn treatment and firefighting equipment. Activities take place at Dan Patch Park, Expo Place and DNR Park. Presented by the Governor's Council on Fire Prevention and Control.
Fire Explorer Challenge at Dan Patch Park (8 a.m. to 6 p.m.): More than 325 youth representing 24 Fire Explorer posts from around the state square off in a variety of competitions – gear donning, ladder raising, spinal immobilization and others – capped off at 5 p.m. with an awards ceremony. Explorers are young men and women who work with adult mentors throughout the year to learn all the skills necessary for a firm understanding of a firefighter’s job. Skits and CPR and AED demonstrations also take place throughout the day on the Dan Patch Park Stage. A “State of Fire Prevention Address” from fire service dignitaries will be presented on stage at 11 a.m. Presented by the Governor's Council on Fire Prevention and Control.
"Hot Zone" at Expo Place (8 a.m. to 6 p.m.): Learn life-saving skills through fun activities and interesting demonstrations: Explore the Safe Escape House and bounce in the Safety Hopper; see demonstrations of kitchen fires and CPR and AED use; discover the latest technology used on fire trucks and in training; climb on antique trucks; try a virtual fire extinguisher; learn about burn and scald prevention and rehabilitation, basic animal rescue training, safety in the water and on trails, and where to find training to become a firefighter; and visit with the State Fire Marshal and other experts and ask questions about fire codes, sprinklers and pipeline safety. Stop by for the famous red helmet giveaway for the littlest firefighters.
Fire prevention focus at the DNR Building and Park (9 a.m. to 9 p.m.): On the north side of the DNR Building, the Department of Natural Resources hosts games to help young and old better understand fire safety and how to prevent wildfires; visitors can test their skills and knowledge for prizes. Climb the Fire Tower (9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., weather permitting), visit the Fire Prevention Building to learn about firefighting equipment and the impact of fires (9 a.m. to 9 p.m.), and meet Smokey Bear at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Flag Raising Ceremony at the Leinie Lodge Bandshell (10:10-10:30 a.m.): The Governor’s Council on Fire Prevention and Control, firefighters from around the state and a pipe and drum team lead the State Fair’s flag raising ceremony.
Hubbard Broadcasting Day at Dan Patch Park (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.): Hubbard Broadcasting Day features the radio and television stations locally owned and operated by Hubbard Broadcasting, Inc. There will be games, activities and interactive booths for the entire family, presented by 5 Eyewitness News, 45TV and myTalk 107.1. Also, look for 1500 ESPN Twin Cities “SuperTalk Saturday” broadcasts live from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. In addition, KS95 will take the stage with live entertainment from 2:30-3:30 p.m., hosted by all of KS95’s on-air personalities – Crisco, Dez, Ryan, Darrin, Moon, Staci, JoJo & Alexa. In addition, from 3:30-5 p.m., meet your favorite podcast personalities.
Minnesota CooksTM Day at Dan Patch Park (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.): Through cooking demonstrations and lively discussions with chefs, cooks, farmers and celebrities, the 15th annual Minnesota CooksTM Day highlights foods produced in Minnesota and explores the critical role that local family farmers and sustainable agriculture have within our state’s food system. Each hour on the Dan Patch Park Stage, using goods supplied by Minnesota farmers and producers, two chefs demonstrate how to prepare flavorful recipes. The program also includes entertainment by Vicky Emerson and Sarah Morris of The Home Fires. Presented by Minnesota Farmers Union with support from Minnesota Farmers Union Insurance, Farmers Union Industries, and Minnesota Grown.
Today's Deal: Reduced admission at the gate - Seniors (65+) and Kids (5-12) $9. Special ride & game promotions are offered at Mighty Midway and Kidway all day. Many merchandise and food vendors offer special Seniors & Kids Day bargains for all fair guests.
Minnesota State Patrol Day at Expo Place (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.): The Minnesota State Patrol shows off an array of tools it uses to keep our roadways safe. Stop by for an up-close look at a State Patrol helicopter, Special Response tactical gear, vintage squad cars and motorcycles, a crash reconstruction project, a DWI testing station, and how truck traffic stays safe and legal. A rollover simulator removes any doubt about the importance of seatbelts. Head on over to Expo Place to ask State Troopers questions about the work they do. Stage shows throughout the day feature drug detection K-9 demonstrations and airbag deployment, and fatal vision goggles show the dangers of impaired driving. State maps will be given away.
Today's Deals: Reduced admission at the gate - All Ages $9. Must present valid documentation of military service to receive discounted admission. Discount applies to active military, spouses and kids; retired military and spouses; and military veterans and spouses.
Military Appreciation Day at Expo Place (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.): This year, the seventh annual Military Appreciation Day at the fair highlights the 100th anniversary of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. At Expo Place, the Minnesota National Guard hosts a family fun experience with a 120-foot obstacle course, a pedal cart track, a blow-up football toss, a blow-up spider tent and displays by the Red Bull Historic Military Vehicle Association. Fair guests can stop by to tell their family's story of service in air-conditioned trailers for the video series, "Multi-Generational Military Families." Presented by USAA.
Military Appreciation Day at Dan Patch Park (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.): Stop by to visit more than 50 educational booths and organizations that support the military in celebration of Military Appreciation Day presented by USAA. On the Dan Patch Park Stage, enjoy entertainment, special musical guests and a birthday celebration to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division.
Other Military Appreciation Day events: The day begins with a 9:30 a.m. ceremony at the Veterans Garden on the south side of the Agriculture Horticulture Building. At 9:45 a.m., the day is commemorated with an opening ceremony flag raising program at the Leinie Lodge Bandshell, followed by a 34th Combat Aviation Brigade Helicopter Flyover. The 34th Infantry Division “Red Bull” Band performs at the Leinie Lodge Bandshell at 10:30 and 11:45 a.m. In honor of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division Centennial, the daily parade will be led by Commanding General Brigadier General Jon Jensen and his staff. It will also include a Red Bull Color Guard and Marching Band.
Today's Deals: Public library cardholders receive the following discounted admission ticket price when you purchase a ticket at the gate and present a valid library card. (Only one discount per card is permitted.) Reduced admission: Adults (13-64) $12; Seniors (65+) $9; Kids (5-12) $9. Special ride & game promotions are offered for everyone at Mighty Midway and Kidway all day.
Read & Ride Day at Dan Patch Park (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.): Join Minnesota’s public libraries in celebrating readers of all ages. Stop by to tell a Book Fortuneteller what kind of books you like to read and receive the title of what could possibly be the best book you read this year! Don’t miss a roving solar-powered story collector called The Storymobile, which includes iPads, cameras, microphones – and good ol’ pencils and paper – to share and record stories. Walk through Dan Patch Park and read “If You Were The Moon” by Minnesota author Laura Purdie Salas. Meet her between noon and 2 p.m. Performances on stage include comedy sets, hypnotism, dance and drumming, and a musical tribute featuring music from the ‘40s through today. For more information, visit readrideday.org.
Today's Deals: Seniors (65+) admitted for $9 at the gate. Early Bird Specials are offered until 1 p.m. on Mighty Midway and Kidway rides & games. Many merchandise and food vendors offer special Seniors Day bargains for all fair guests.
Seniors Day at Dan Patch Park (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.): The 15th Annual State’s Largest Senior Stretch & Stroll kicks off on the Dan Patch Park Stage at 9 a.m. with The Pearl Brothers performing music of the 1960s to ‘80s. Then, UCare, Volunteers of America and Healthways SilverSneakers® Fitness Program team up from 10-10:45 a.m. to teach seniors how to stretch muscles and live a healthful life. UCare stays on in the park to present an afternoon of health and wellness demonstrations and giveaways.
Today's Deals: Early Bird Specials are offered until 1 p.m. on Mighty Midway and Kidway rides & games.
MPR Day at Dan Patch Park (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.): On the Dan Patch Park Stage, MPR News, Classical MPR and 89.3 The Current team up for live broadcasts and performances throughout the day. Join on-air hosts for activities and giveaways in celebration of Minnesota Public Radio's 50th Anniversary! Members can stop by for giveaways (while supplies last). Presented by Minnesota Public Radio.
AARP Rocks: Battle of the Minnesota Bands at Dan Patch Park (8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m.): Stop by Dan Patch Park to watch AARP Rocks: Battle of the Minnesota Bands. Bands will perform at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Don’t miss out on stellar local talent! The 2017 Minnesota AARP Volunteer of the Year will be honored in an award presentation on stage at 12:30 p.m. At 1 p.m., there will be a presentation about “Fighting Alzheimer’s in Minnesota.” Presented by AARP.
The Great Yoga & Wellness Get-Together at Dan Patch Park (9 a.m. to 6 p.m.): Whether you’re a novice wondering what the “downward-facing dog” rage is all about, or a longtime practitioner who can hold the most challenging yoga poses, stop by for a myriad of wellness experiences at Dan Patch Park. Experienced instructors lead a variety of classes in formats ranging from kids’ yoga, flexibility and strength-based classes to an educational seminar. Area yoga and wellness studios also host activities, prize drawings and giveaways, as well as share information about the benefits of yoga and wellness. Presented by Studio 9-to-5.
Today's Deals: Kids (5-12) admitted for $9 at the gate. Special ride & game promotions are offered at Mighty Midway and Kidway all day. Many merchandise and food vendors offer Last Chance bargains all day (see the brochure rack for the Last Chance Guide on Sept. 4)
Hmong Minnesota Day at Dan Patch Park (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.): Now in its third year, Hmong Minnesota Day at the State Fair highlights The Year of the Woman: Celebrating the Accomplishments of Hmong American Women. This year, programming will feature songs, dance, storytelling, poetry, photo exhibits, arts and crafts, visual arts and live music. The opening ceremony will feature statements by Hmong politicians and honor Hmong Americans in uniform from local law enforcement and military branches. The afternoon will highlight Hmong Americans who identify as LGBTQ, as well as professional and amateur athletes. To wrap up the day, two musical acts will perform, including Maly Vu, former Miss Hmong International. Event partners include Hmong American Partnership, Community School of Excellence and HEART (Hmong Education and Resources Today).