Missing the State Fair? Order a Kit With All of Your Favorite Foods
A Minnesota company is shipping the fair food experience nationwide.
The first-ever Minnesota State Fair was held in 1859 and the Minnesota Agricultural Society has held the annual event every year since, with six notable exceptions: it was called off in 1861 and 1862 because of the Civil War and U.S.-Dakota War; in 1893 because of the Chicago World's Fair; in 1945 because of "federal government travel restrictions" related to World War II; in 1946 due to a statewide outbreak of polio; and this year, because of, well, you know.
Although fairgoers won't be there in person this year—and nobody is getting a hug from Fairchild, the fair's anthropomorphic gopher mascot—the event is doing its best to go ahead with some of its long-standing traditions. The crowning of the new Princess Kay of the Milky Way will be livestreamed on Facebook, and the finalists in the competition will still have their likenesses carved out of giant hunks of butter. (You can apparently watch butter sculpting highlights online too.)
Food vendors have also done their best to adapt. Earlier this summer, some of the most popular purveyors of Fair Food set up their stands in parking lots throughout Minnesota, and in neighboring Wisconsin. (And the longtime owner of the Pronto Pups stand sold batter-dipped hot dogs at the end of her own driveway.)
Last week, tickets went on sale for this month's State Fair Food Parade, a 1.5-mile drive-thru experience that will feature 16 different food vendors, trivia games, bingo and—yes!—Fairchild the gopher. There were 19,000 vehicle tickets available for the three Food Parade weekends, and they sold out in 2 ½ hours.
BUT if you still can't stop thinking about cheese curds or daydreaming about mini-doughnuts, you're still in luck. A quick-thinking Minnetonka business has put together "State Fair to Go" food kits, which allow you to not only bring the taste of the fair into your own home, you can also cook everything on your own time too. (Although, let's be honest: part of the thrill of the Fair is pushing your digestive system to its absolute limit.)
Each State Fair to Go box comes with an assortment of Fair faves, including cheese curds, corn dogs, French fries, fresh ears of corn, chocolate chip cookies and, yes, those mini-doughnuts. And there are enough of each item to feed five people—or for one person who wants to spend their entire week living their best life.
The boxes are selling for $59.95 and are expected to be mailed out on August 17. Shipping is free within the state of Minnesota, and will cost $14.95 to have them sent to the rest of the continental U.S. Find more information at statefairtogo.com.
You're on your own if you want to try some DIY butter sculpting, though.