Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Top 10 Things To Do at the Indiana State Fair

By Lauren Taylor of Indiana Soybean Alliance

The Year of the Farmer! It’s time to celebrate the hard work of the people behind Indiana agriculture. So what is the best way to do that? Check out the top 10 things to do this year at the 2015 Indiana State Fair! You are guaranteed to have a great time.

10. Be Amaized

Come to the Harvest Pavilion and check out Amazing Maize! Amazing Maize takes visitors on a journey through the centuries, beginning with corn's unlikely origins in a small-eared bushy plant called teosinte. Visitors trace the global spread of the crop following Christopher Columbus' travels, including its social impact in Africa and Europe. Fairgoers return to the shores of America to explore the push to improve productivity and the rise of hybrid corn. The final stop on the journey highlights the modern technology used to improve and grow the crop. 

9. Get Local

ISDA will host the brand-new Indiana Grown booth located within the Harvest Pavilion at this year’s State Fair.  The booth will provide State Fair visitors the opportunity to learn more about the program, as well as where they can buy locally-based Indiana Grown products.

8. Oh Baby

See a baby calf born almost every day at the Indiana State Fair! That’s right every day! Now on its 16th year, the Livestock Nursery is an award winning interactive, educational venue that attracts all ages!

7. Pig Out

The Indiana Pork Producers got a makeover! When you come to the State Fair this year, make sure to stop by and get your pork burger at the new and improved pork tents! They have a new look and a new flavor that won’t disappoint, but the same great hospitality.

6. Go Live

Come to the Glass Barn and talk to farmers LIVE at 11, 2, 4 every day! Prizes will be given away at each and every chat! Throughout the Indiana State Fair, visitors of the Glass Barn will have an opportunity to Skype with Indiana farmers on their farms and ask them questions about their production practices. In addition to talking with farmers, the Glass Barn visitors can enjoy a free photo booth, learn about modern farms through an interactive computer game, and follow the journey a soybean takes from field to table.

5. Dress Up

Superman the llama? Yep you heard right! You can see that at the Indiana State Fair! Check out the llama costume contest where you can see llamas like you have never seen them before! 

4. Fly High

Get in line for the Ferris wheel and go all the way to the top to overlook the beautiful Indiana State Fairgrounds! If it wasn’t for soy biodiesel then you may get stuck up there. The entire Midway at the State Fair is powered by soy biodiesel. That means that Indiana farmers don’t just feed Hoosiers they also fuel your fun! 

3. Be Cool

When the hot, humid weather sets in for the Indiana State Fair, visit the northeast side of the fairgrounds and walk through Pathway to Water Quality (PWQ). The park-like setting is an exhibit showcasing the importance of water quality and soil health. Conservation practices are on display that can be utilized on the farm, at home, and all areas in between. There is plenty of shade to cool you off, and activities for children and adults alike. Pathway also highlights beautiful native plants and flowers, and wildlife such as hawks, ducks and birds. As you leave, grab a cup of cool, free water. PWQ is sponsored by the Indiana Conservation Partnership.

2. Need S'more

Visit the Dairy Bar right across from the Plaza, the new beautiful addition to the Indiana Farmers Coliseum, for a milkshake and a famous grilled cheese at the Dairy Bar. In addition to all the classic favorites, this year’s featured shake is the toasted-marshmallow-flavored S’mores Shake and the featured grilled cheese is Muenster cheese on cinnamon raisin bread. YUM!

1. Meet a Farmer

In celebration of Year of the Farmer at the Indiana State Fair, IFOF challenges you to find a farmer around the Indiana State Fairgrounds and take a picture with them using the official hashtag #FarmerSelfie. You can take a picture with a poster of a farmer, a sign with a farmer on it, or even with 1 of 17 featured farmers. Then post your picture on all of your social media handles! For every #FarmerSelfie posted, IFOF will make a donation to Feeding Indiana’s Hungry! At the end of each day of the fair, Indiana Family of Farmers will be a drawing for a winner that will get a $50 gift card to Kroger! So be sure to find a farmer take a #FarmerSelfie and post it online! Having fun and feeding the hungry! What could be better than that? 

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