After a rainy Friday with the lowest attendance day in two years, the crowds were back at the Fair on Saturday! At some points it felt like the whole state was there. With some rain in the forecast again on Sunday, that may work against what typically is another busy day for the Fair. Sunday is Minnesota Cooks Day at the Fair, featuring cooking demonstrations and discussions of the role of food in the lives of Minnesotans throughout the Fairgrounds.
Below is a selection of what we think is most worthy of checking out on Day Four; for a full daily schedule, visit the Minnesota State Fair official site at http://www.mnstatefair.org:
- 11:00am: Dress A Sheep Contest (Sheep & Poultry Barn) — teams of four in costumes race to dress their sheep in a complementary outfit. If this doesn’t sound like the kind of unique, bizarre fun that can only happen at the Fair, I don’t know what is.
- 11:00am, 1:00pm and 3:00pm: Raptor Displays and Flying Demonstrations (DNR Building Garden Stage) — Make your way to the DNR Garden Stage for Last Chance Forever Conservancy’s raptor show, which they have presented at the Fair for many years running. Owls, falcons and hawks swoop over the crowd and the intelligent conservationists dazzle with facts about these majestic creatures.
- 11:30am-2:15pm: Minnesota State Fiddle Contest (West End Market) — hear the finest fiddle players in the state compete in five different divisions face off in a musical battle for supremacy.
- 12:30pm and 5:00pm: Sean Emery (Family Fair Stage) — this one is great for the kids, though usually the biggest laughs come from the adults in the audience. Sean Emery is a State Fair legend, performing his juggling act at the Family Fair Stage for decades. I can personally attest, after watching dozens of performances and doing a whole lot of growing up in the meantime, Emery’s act has never lost its luster.
- 3:00pm, 4:00pm and 5:00pm: The High 48s (West End Market) — a five-piece bluegrass band out of Minneapolis capable of mixing the old school Americana sound with contemporary influences.
- 3:00pm: Minnesota Horse Show Draft Horse Barrel Racing (Coliseum) — fast-paced action takes over the Coliseum as the Minnesota Horse Show continues for the fourth day, now featuring high-speed barrel racing. This is always one of the most exciting events to watch inside the Coliseum.
- 6:00pm: Minnesota State Fair Amateur Talent Contest (Leinie Lodge Bandshell Stage) — watch as contestants in various age divisions compete for the opportunity to advance to the Talent Contest Finals, held Sunday, September 2nd in the Grandstand.
- 7:30pm: Earth, Wind & Fire (Grandstand) — the calendar may still say August for another few days, but this legendary act are sure to turn it over to “September” a little early. With numerous number one hits, the Grandstand is sure to be singing and dancing along all night.
- 8:00pm: Ipso Facto (International Bazaar) — Minneapolis-based reggae, jazz and funk legends together since the 1980s will ensure that the International Bazaar is the place to dance and party well into the night.
- 8:00pm: Mayda (West End Market) – R&B and pop collide into the powerful Mayda, who will light up the stage at the Schilling Amphitheater.
- 8:30pm: BoDeans (Leinie Lodge Bandshell) — pioneers of alternative rock, the band have opened for a number of major musical talents for large arena shows since their formation in the 1980s.
- 9:15pm: Laser Encore’s Laser Hitz Show (Eco Experience) — lasers and music combine for a visual spectacle each night of the Fair, outside the Eco Experience building.