Daily Schedule Highlights — Friday, August 31st

This is it: the final day of August. As the Fair goes, so does the end of summer, and the chill in the air is unmistakable. Now that the dog days of summer are coming to an end, it becomes all the more important to squeeze in every last bit of the Fair we can. We have one last long holiday weekend to taste everything, see everything, do everything on offer at the Fair; let’s make the most of it!

Below is a selection of what we think is most worthy of checking out on Day Nine; for a full daily schedule, visit the Minnesota State Fair official site at http://www.mnstatefair.org:

  • 7:30am: Minnesota State Fair Horse Show: Northwoods Trail Cup Challenge, Appaloosa, Paint, Pinto, Quarter Horses, WSCA Pleasure (Warner Coliseum) — each of these breeds of horses compete by completing an obstacle course imitating Northern Minnesota scenery.
  • 9:30am: Safe Tractor Operator’s Contest (Compeer Arena) — watch the action as tractor drivers pull off difficult maneuvers in their rigs and compete to become the best in their business.
  • 10:00-11:00am: MPR News Live: Mark Seeley Weather Quiz (Dan Patch Park) — Minnesotans love to talk about the weather, and now you can win prizes for doing so with MPR’s annual weather quiz.
  • 10:30am and 11:45am: Sunpie and the Louisiana Sunspots (Leinie Lodge Bandshell) — early morning New Orleans-style zydeco music to get your day started right, with heavy Afro-Caribbean influences from the legendary musicians.
  • 10:45am, 12:00pm and 1:15pm: Black Market Brass (International Bazaar) — the sizable Minneapolis-based brass band will get people up and dancing early with their loud and vibrant sound.
  • 11:00am-12:00pm: MPR News Live Broadcast: Gubernatorial Debate (Dan Patch Park) — watch live in person as Republican Jeff Johnson and Democrat Tim Walz debate each other as part of their campaigns to become the next governor of Minnesota.
  • 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 Americana-Roots Duet Contest (West End Market) — pairs of performers in the old-timey genre of roots music compete on stage for cash prizes and notoriety, providing spectators with an entertaining show of talented musicians.
  • 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.
  • 1:00-2:00pm: Classical MPR Activity: Bring the Sing with Cantus (Dan Patch Park) — world famous choral group Cantus conducts a special performance for the crowds gathered at the Fair, dazzling listeners with their incredible voices.
  • 1:00pm: Trivia Mafia (Star Tribune Stage) — play a game of team trivia with questions pulled from the Star Tribune’s archives for fantastic prizes.
  • 3:00-4:00pm: The Current Live Broadcast: Chastity Brown with Host Mark Wheat (Dan Patch Park) — Minnesota’s own folk-pop star Chastity Brown joins The Current to play original songs she wrote, covering vocals and acoustic guitar, ahead of her headlining gig later on at the West End Market’s stage.
  • 3:15pm, 4:30pm and 5:45pm: The Men of New Hope (International Bazaar) — the sounds of a cappella harmony will fill the air as this talented group of singers perform their uplifting songs.
  • 3:30pm and 4:45pm: Cowboy Mouth (Leinie Lodge Bandshell) — a punk rock sensibility will invade the Bandshell stage as this Louisiana band brings their raw energy up the river to the Fair.
  • 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.
  • 7:00pm: 311 and The Offspring (Grandstand) — the 1990s are alive again at the Grandstand for one night only, as these two veteran bands bring their alt-rock sound to thousands of fans.
  • 7:45pm: All Tomorrow’s Petty (Giggles’ Campfire Grill) — Minnesota’s own Tom Petty cover band will keep the hits coming at the beer hall tucked behind the ever-popular Giggles’.
  • 8:00pm: Chastity Brown (West End Market) — talented folk-pop singer-songwriter Chastity Brown will bring her smartly-written lyrics and melodic acoustic guitar to the Schilling Amphitheater for an intimate and powerful performance.
  • 8:00pm: Tropical Zone Orchestra (International Bazaar) — if you’re in the mood for music with some Latin flavor, this salsa fusion band will light up your evening. Bring your dancing shoes!
  • 8:30pm: Steve Augeri (Leinie Lodge Bandshell) — rock out with the former lead singer of Journey as he pulls out songs from his time with the best-selling band as well as his own original tunes for an energetic performance to close out the Bandshell stage for the evening.
  • 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.
Categories 2018 Minnesota State Fair, Daily Schedule Highlights

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