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[r29] Column: Traditions, fond memories made at our State Fair
Start Date: 8/1/2014 All Day
End Date: 8/1/2014
Entry Description
Traditions, fond memories made at our State Fair

It is almost that time of year again for the Indiana State Fair! For years, families have traveled across the state to enjoy all the great things our fair has to offer. Like most Hoosiers, the fair is very special to me, and it brings back many fond memories of time spent with family and friends. 

Mom, dad and I went to the fair every year. Although I was never much for riding rides, I loved seeing the animals. We never missed “band day” where it was always exciting to hear, "Hailing from Noblesville, Indiana the Marching Millers."

Mom and I also loved the sewing, cooking and craft projects, which were all located in what used to be called the "Women's Building.” After high school for several years, I did a lot of cross-stitch and needlework projects that I showed at the state fair.

Our state fair is one of the oldest and most attended fairs in the nation. Dating back to 1852, many traditions that took place then are still taking place today, like the daily shows at the Grandstand. Even while maintaining many of the traditions that Hoosiers have come to love over the years, the fair always has new and exciting things that the whole family can enjoy.

Every year the fair has a theme and 2014 is the “Year of the Coliseum.” Celebrating an 18-month, $63 million dollar renovation, the Coliseum is as historic as the name sounds. Intended to be the heart of the fair, the new complex will feature horse competitions, concerts, livestock shows and other events that truly embody what the state fair is all about. While some of these events cost money, there are countless activities to enjoy that are completely free of charge.

In the Dow AgroSciences Celebration Park, there will be the Flippenout Extreme Trampoline Show, which will be taking place all 17 days of the fair. For the teenagers, there is a Freestyle BMX Stunt Show that is sure to be exciting. Other events include a K9 Trick Dog Show and Kachunga and the Alligator.

On the Free Stage, there will be a variety of nationally recognized artists performing every day like country singer, Dustin Lynch. One show that you won’t want to miss is Indiana-native Josh Kaufman’s performance on Aug. 7. After putting Indiana on the map by winning NBC’s “The Voice,” I know his show will be spectacular. At the end of the day, something that is always free, is walking around the fairgrounds and enjoying all of the fantastic booths and exhibits that are there.

If you are still deciding on whether or not to go, one thing that continues to separate our fair from the rest is the incredible food. I have even heard of some people traveling across the state just for the food. Many of the signature items, like the Fruit Twister Shake-up or the Colossal Grilled Cheese, are a must try, but my favorite foods include the corn dogs and nut sundae on a stick; a little taffy always found its way home too. 

As amazing as all the exhibits, food and entertainment appear to be this year, most importantly, the fair provides amazing opportunities to celebrate our Hoosier heritage and make lasting memories with family and friends.

The fair begins Aug. 1st and will run through the 17th.  Gates open daily at 8 a.m., and parking is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. General Admission tickets are $10 for anyone 6 and older, and children under 5 get in for free, but discount tickets are available at certain participating stores like CVS. However, I can assure you that with everything the fair has to offer this year, it is worth every penny.

I’m looking forward to all of the fantastic events offered this year, and I hope you can join me in celebrating Indiana at our state fair. I encourage you to visit www.in.gov/statefair/ for a full listing of activities available, and I even hear there is a new app that you can download, which lists everything from parking to prices.

I hope this information was useful, and I hope to see you at the fair!

-30-

Representative Kathy Kreag Richardson (R-Noblesville)
Contact Information:
Name: Ben Gavelek
Phone: 317-232-9831
Email: ben.gavelek@iga.in.gov
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  • Agriculture & Environment
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    House of Representatives Republican Caucus

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