Monday, September 06, 2010

Tuesdays Around Town - State Fair

Today, it's off to work after the three-day Labor Day weekend that marks the end of the Minnesota State Fair and the unofficial end of summer. D and I went to the Fair early Saturday, thinking we'd enjoy ourselves just until it got crowded and then leave. The gorgeous weather no doubt contributed to the largest daily attendance EVER, but you'll see by these photos that we had a lot of space to ourselves for much of the morning. "Fairchild" is the name of the gopher mascot. I took the extreme-angle photo above to see if I could block out the plastic bags at his feet.

I don't know if the bags were covering up a repair or ? , but I'm curious to see if they show up next year.
D and I ate a "Peg Muffin" breakfast at the "only full service place" in the Fair.
Then we headed over to the Space Needle for a quick revolving ride to the top. The next few photos were taken on the ride.
The Agriculture/Horticulture Building.
Kiddie Midway (above). Midway (below) - with University of Minnesota, St Paul campus in the background.

Grandstand and giant slide.
Down on the ground again, we stopped by the Alphabet Forest - an activity site set up by artist/author Debra Frasier. We had our photos taken with letter cards stuck in foam tubing.

I took an alphabet game with me to play as we walked around: simply list a word for every letter of the alphabet that represents a sight, sound, smell or experience of the Fair. I finished the game and brought it back for an actual blue ribbon.

When seen this close, the size of a single wind-generator blade never ceases to amaze me! But that sky was no less awesome!
We spent most of our time on Machinery Hill. These old tractors were so colorful and fascinating. D told me the "spikes" on the back wheels are needed to drive over soft earth without getting stuck.

Antique kiddie tractors - they look kind of heavy, but farm kids are strong, right?

I must admit I've never before seen a tractor this old....

Or this big!

This was not one of the many places we ate, but it was too colorful to pass by without photographing.

The wares for sale have gotten more coloful - and unusual - too.

"You don't mess around with Dave..."

Just a shot of the wind turbine blade behind Giggles Campfire Grill, where we ate salmon-on-a-stick.

Smart car with sunflowers and State Fair water tower.

Two lumberjacks competing in axe-throwing.

And tree-climbing.

And running across the logs. The lumberjack fell twice after two logs, but the lumberJILL made it all the way across both times.

She won the log-rolling competition too, even though the other guy was spinning the log with his feet while kicking water at her!

Here's a little-known State Fair landmark. Tucked behind a block of buildings over by the DNR building, it's been around since 1933 and is open to the public.

In the horse barn, this colorful cabinet caught my eye. I could have sworn I took a picture of at least one horse and can't find it.

The newer chairlift with open seats and Machinery Hill at one end.

When I took the photo, I didn't notice the "150" in the lower right corner of this huge mosaic postcard. The last time I was at the Fair was in 2008, the year Minnesota turned 150 years old as a state!

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