Our State Fair is a Great State Fair

August 17, 2011 | 20 comments

Rodgers and Hammerstein had it right. The Iowa State Fair really is the best state fair. It’s the best one in our state! 🙂

(I’m posting today from the city, with photos from the iPhone. We’ve been in Des Moines, stomping grapes and selling our family’s soynuts and seeing the world from a treetop view.)


Our State Fair is a great state fair
don’t miss it
don’t even be late
It’s dollars to doughnuts at our state fair
It’s the best state fair in the state

— Rodgers and Hammerstein

In these, the last days of summer, we’re celebrating blue-ribbon moments. Have you been to your state fair? It’s an excuse to:

Rediscover your inner child.
Learn about your great state.
Eat from among the more than 50 food items available on a stick: pork chops, PB&J, cheesecake, tiramisu … even butter! 🙂

by | August 17, 2011 | 20 comments


  1. Stephani

    Our state fair is in September! I haven’t been recently, but am planning to go this year! Looks like you had fun!

  2. Lyla Lindquist

    And would you please keep yer livestock off the sidewalk?

  3. Jenny

    Oh that is one of our favorite movies! {The older one, not the one with Ann Margaret}

  4. Michelle

    I heard on the news about fried butter.
    Have you tried it.
    What exactly is it?
    How does it taste?

  5. Lori

    I wanna go on that big slide, I remember those! Arizona State Fair is in September but it’s always too hot to go 🙂 I’d like to have gone to yours! Lori

  6. Maria

    We were there all day on Monday. Would have been nice to meet you. Have you noticed the extra smelliness of the south/west end of the grounds this year? I don’t remember it smelling quite so nasty in the past, and I don’t mean animal smells, more like old trash. Ick.

  7. Ann Kroeker

    My daughter’s at our state fair with friends this very night…but such sadness winds through our state fair as we grieve (the stage blew into the crowd seconds before a Sugarland concert began…such a tragedy).

    • dukeslee

      This is so sad, Ann! Prayers for those affected. 🙁

  8. Beth Herring

    that sounds like so much fun! i love tiramisu!

  9. S. Etole

    Our state fair is in September, but I’ve been to the county one and had peach pie!

  10. kendal

    love this! i haven’t been to my state fair since college….

  11. Melody

    We just moved to NC and from what I understand we have a great State Fair as well but we’ve never been to one. I think we’ll check in to it after reading this. Looks like so much fun. I was all excited because for some reason I thought you were in NC until I went back and read the Iowa part in real big letters like right in my face. Oh well. Don’t think we can make that drive this weekend. Ha!

  12. Mari Mayborn

    Oh Jennifer, I grew up at the Iowa State Fair! My dad was a judge so we spent a lot of time with the Butter Cow over at the Hort. building. And I remember how yummy an ice cold pickle on a stick was on a hot afternoon. Or, better yet, a trip over to the ice cream building!

    I loved getting stopped atop the double ferris wheel in the evening, with all the colorful lights of the middway below and a cool Iowa breeze blowing through our hair. Great way to end a day at the Iowa State Fair.

  13. Sheila Lagrand

    I have all kinds of ugliness tied up with fairs in my memory. Thanks for reminding me that the problem was not the fairs, themselves.

    I need to revisit.

  14. Melinda

    We were there! I’m trying to place just where you were selling the soy nuts – the AG building? Our state fair is the BEST state fair.

  15. Angie Vik

    Love your pictures. Sad to say, but I’ve never been to the Iowa State Fair. All those years living in Iowa and we never went. Glad you had a good time.

  16. Laura

    One of my favorite musicals, too! Sadly, Florida doesn’t do fairs very well…

    Great photos!

  17. David Rupert

    Hey, I recognize those soy nuts!

    Can I put my order in now for some in late September?

    • dukeslee

      I’ll bring some soynuts along for the crew. Any special requests? 🙂

  18. Megan Willome

    It looks awesome! Hope you had a great time and sold lots of soy nuts.

    Praying for the start of school …


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