50 Things to Do at the Minnesota State Fair


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Download a checklist of 50 Things To Do With Your Family at the State Fair

Culled from my own personal list, kid-tested and highly approved! Find some new fun or old favorites at the 2016 Minnesota State Fair this with this handy checklist. All events are free unless noted. For a printable copy, click on the graphic at the bottom of this article.

1.  Go on a Fabulous Fair Alphabet scavenger hunt • pick up supplies at the Alphabet Forest, and don’t forget to stop in for alphabet activities and to meet Minnesota authors. Baldwin Park, daily 8am-9pm
2.  Ride the Giant Slide • daily, $2.50/rider
3.  Play in a mock farm at Little Farm Hands • designed for ages 2-10, open daily 8am-7pm
4.  Dig in the Great Big Sandbox • located in Baldwin Park, open daily 8am-9pm
5.  Get a birds-eye view of the Fair from the Space Tower • $3/rider
6.  Seek out the biggest, prize-winning pumpkin • Ag-Hort Building, open daily 9am-9pm
7.  Gawk at the biggest boar • Swine Barn, open daily
8.  Hand-milk a cow • Land O’Lakes Stage outside Cattle Barn, daily 11:30am & 1:30pm (Labor Day 11:30 only)
9.  Belt some tunes at the Giant Sing Along • south of the Pet Center, daily 9am-8pm
10. Try a new food (or 10) on-a-stick! • find the list of new State Fair foods for 2016 here.
11. Play some backyard baseball at the Minnesota Twins Experience • just east of the International Bazaar
12. Take a Fine Arts Detective scavenger hunt • win a ribbon at the Fine Arts Building, daily 9am-9pm
13. Have a sit-down breakfast at Salem Lutheran Diner (opens 7am) or The Peg (opens 6:30am)
14. Catch the newborns at the CHS Miracle of Birth Center • open daily 9am-9pm (3pm Labor Day)
15. Explore the interactive EquiMania! exhibit • Horse Barn, open daily 9am-7pm (5pm Labor Day)
16. Dig and build in the Eco Experience Nature Adventure Play Yard • open daily 9am-9pm
17. While you’re at it, there’s lots more for kids inside the Eco Experience! • open daily 9am-9pm
18. Watch stunts at the 3rd Lair Skate Park • X-Zone, find daily showtimes here.
19. Get drenched on a hot day on the River Raft Ride • $5/rider
20. Enter a mini butter-carving competition! • Moo Booth, outside the Cattle Barn, 10am daily
21. Meet Princess Kay of the Milky Way or watch her being carved in butter • Dairy Building (see daily schedule)
22.Test your skills on the Boy Scouts Adventure Summit ropes course • daily
23. Play free games in FAN Central • 9am-9pm, Underwood & Dan Patch Ave.
24. Watch an Arts-In performance in the 4-H Building, plus be wowed by all the talented exhibitors • building open daily 9am-9pm, find daily performances here.
25. Catch the Timberworks Lumberjack Show • North Woods, shows daily at 12, 3, 5:30 & 7pm
26. Visit the Minnesota Farm Bureau for agritainment: scavenger hunt, family photo booth and the chance to win a free children’s book • daily 9am-9pm, Underwood St.
27. Take the Minnesota State Fair History Walking Tour • daily during Fair hours
28. Help Ye Old Mill celebrate 101 years at the Fair • $3.25/rider, find discount days here.
29. Visit the DNR Naturalist Tent for kids’ activities • 9am-9pm
30. Listen to great free acts at the Leine Lodge Bandshell • get the complete schedule here.
31. Participate in STEM Day activities at the Fair • Aug. 25 only, Carousel Park, 8am-5pm
32. Become a Kids Flower Detective • Ag-Hort Building, Aug. 29 & 30 only, 1-5pm
33. Climb the DNR Firetower • daily 9am-5pm
34. Catch Break-Shop Bump’n and other great free kids acts • new Baldwin Park Stage, schedule here.
35. Discover the new Math-on-a-Stick activities • Baldwin Park, daily 9am-8pm
36. Tour the Haunted House (if you dare – not endorsed by FFTC for young children) • daily, $4/pp
37. Save on Kidway/Midway rides with a Blue Ribbon Bargain Book • $5 per book
38. Celebrate National Park Service Centennial with hands-on activities • 8/29 only, Carousel Park
39. Chickens, roosters, ducks and other birds have returned for 2016! • Poultry Barn, 9am-9pm
40. Cross the Fair in the air on the SkyRide or SkyGlider • $4/pp one-way or $6 round-trip
41. Stumble upon an Arts A’Fair pop-up performance • various shows, find the lineup here.
42. Play some Midway games • 10am-midnight (11pm Labor Day)
43. Catch the “History on a Schtick” • Schilling Amphitheater, West End Market, daily 9:30 & 10:30am
44. Watch screenings of “State Fair Stories” • Carousel Park, 8:15pm nightly
45. Pick out blue-ribbon recipes and crafts • Creative Activities Building, daily 9am-9pm
46. Climb on a fire truck at Governor’s Fire Prevention Day • Aug. 26 only, 8am-6pm, various sites
47. Catch the All-Star Stunt Dog show • North Woods, daily at 11:30am, 2 & 4pm
48. Pick up freebies galore in the Education Building • open daily 9am-9pm
49. Learn a thing or two at the Thank a Farmer Magic Show • Christensen Farms Stage, find times here.
50. Find State Fair mascots Fairchild & Fairborne to snap a commemorative pic! • Visitors Plaza, daily 11am & 4pm. Be sure to wish Fairchild a very happy 50th birthday!

50 Things To Do At The Minnesota State Fair - Printable List

CLICK HERE TO PRINT THIS LIST.

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About the author

Anne Kingston

If we left it up to Anne to write her own bio, it would never get posted. She doesn't enjoy talking about herself, but Anne does love exploring the Twin Cities with her family and sharing her finds here. She, her husband and their four kids are lifelong residents of St. Paul.

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