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The Minnesota State Fair 2022: Everything You Need to Know Before You Go

minnesota state fair faqs
Minnesota State Fair water tower. Photo by Doug Wallick on Flickr.

Headed to the Minnesota State Fair? It’s a great place to enjoy local eats, fun games and to listen to some amazing local bands. But what is the line-up like? Is there anything else you should know before you attend? Read on to find out!

What is the Minnesota State Fair?

The Minnesota State Fair is a festival complete with food, games, and music. It was started back in 1854 as a way for local farmers to show off their wares but in the modern day is more known for being an end-of-the-summer get-together.  

minnesota state fair history
VO Hammon Publishing Company (Minneapolis & Chicago) postcard mailed 1910 showing the Minnesota State Fair. Photo by VO Hammon.

Is the Minnesota State Fair the Largest in the Nation?

Minnesota State Fair is the largest in the nation based on daily attendance. For overall attendance, however, Texas wins, but it also runs twice as long.

What Bands are Coming to the Minnesota State Fair?

There are so many bands coming to the Minnesota State Fair, that we can’t possibly list them all! But below are the bands we are most excited to see.

At the Fair: (Free With Admission!)

  • Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry
  • Caitlyn Smith
  • DSL
  • Low Cut Connie
  • The Family Stone
  • The Jayhawks
  • Darry
  • Honeybutter
  • Annie Mack
  • Turn Turn Turn
  • Gully Boys

At the Grandstand: (Additional Ticket Required)

What are the Dates for the 2022 Minnesota State Fair?

The Minnesota State Fair 2022 is from August 25th until Labor Day, September 5th.

 

How Do You Get to the Minnesota State Fair?

There are several ways to get to the Minnesota State Fair: driving, buses, park & rides, or rideshare apps.

By Bus

There is a special bus service as well as regular bus services to the fair. Route 3, Metro A Line, and the Metro Green Line will all take you to the fair. Use the Metro Trip Planner to find your route.

Park & Ride

There are 30 Park & Ride locations that serve the fair. Find them here.

Driving Directions

Here are the directions from various locations to the Minnesota State Fair

Driving from the North:

  • Take I-35W south
  • Merge onto Highway 36 East
  • Exit onto Snelling Avenue South

Driving from the South:

  • Take I-35W North
  • Then take I-94 East
  • Exit onto Snelling Avenue and head north

Driving From the East:

  • Take I-94 West
  • Exit onto Snelling Avenue and head north

Driving from the West:

  • Take I-94 East
  • Exit onto Snelling Ave and head north

Is Minnesota State Fair Cash Only?

While most vendors and the admissions gates have the option to pay by credit card, many vendors still only accept cash. To be able to enjoy everything you’d like to enjoy at the fair, you should bring cash in addition to your credit card.

What is the Minnesota State Fair Famous For?

The Minnesota State Fair is known for the beauty of its fairgrounds as well as the promotion of local agriculture, arts, and cuisines.

minnesota state fair crop show
A field corn exhibit and competition at the Minnesota State Fair in 2007. Photo by Ben Franske.

How Much Does it Cost to go to the Minnesota State Fair?

There is an admission fee for the Minnesota State Fair, but once you pay it once you can enjoy festivities for the entire duration of the fair. Currently, the fair is $17 for an adult admission and $15 for a youth or senior admission.

Some shows require an additional ticket, such as those shown at the Grandstand. Prices for these concerts may vary.

How Do You Park at the Minnesota State Fair?

There is limited parking at the Minnesota State Fair, and it is filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Parking fills quickly, so arrive early. Check this map to see where parking lots are located. Parking is $17 per day, and no overnight or oversize parking is allowed.  

For parking, turn from Snelling Avenue onto either Hoyt Avenue or Como Avenue, depending on the direction you are coming from and availability. Follow the instructions of the parking attendants who will direct you where to park.

Where Can You Drop People Off at the Minnesota State Fair?

You can drop people off at the Minnesota State Fair at the Loop Gate #9 on Como Avenue. Rideshare apps pick up and drop off near Snelling & Hoyt Avenues (North Gate #2) and off of Como Avenue by (Gate #7). Taxis have a designated drop-off by Loop Gate #9.

Are Backpacks Allowed at the Minnesota State Fair?

Backpacks are allowed at the State Fair, but they are subject to search at the entrance gates.

Where is Motorcycle Parking at the Minnesota State Fair?

Motorcycle parking at the Minnesota State Fair is located off Como Avenue by the International Institute. Motorcycle parking costs $11 per day.

minnesota state fair chocolate chip cookies
Sweet Martha’s cookie booth at the Minnesota State Fair in 2005. Photo by Ben Franske.

What is the Most Popular Food at the Minnesota State Fair?

The most popular food at the Minnesota State Fair is Chocolate Chip Cookies. Sold by Sweet  Martha’s, this food stand (well, there are three) wins the prize for the most sales every year.

What Food is the Minnesota State Fair Known for?

There isn’t one food the fair is known for (although the chocolate chip cookies are famous!) rather, you will find a variety of award-winning food at the fair, from BBQ meats, to fried pickles, and cheese curds.

How Many Food Stands are at the Minnesota State Fair?

There are approximately 500 food stands at the Minnesota State Fair.

cheese curds minnesota state fair
A Cheese Curd stand at the Minnesota State Fair in 2009. Photo by Northfielder.

Can I Bring Food into the Minnesota State Fair?

You can bring food into the State Fair but know that alcoholic beverages may not be brought into the fair. Additionally, if you pack your food in a cooler, know that coolers are not allowed in all areas of the festival.

Can You Vape at the Minnesota State Fair?

Vaping and smoking at the Minnesota State Fair are only allowed in designated areas. Smoking and vaping in the grandstand are prohibited.

What Rides do they have at the Minnesota State Fair?

There are three different areas for rides at the Minnesota State Fair, and they include rides like a Carousel, Giant Slide, Ferris Wheel, Sky Glider, Sling Shot, Safari Train, and even small roller coasters for kids.

Do You Have to Pay for Rides at the Minnesota State Fair?

Yes, you do need to pay for rides at the Minnesota State Fair. The price for rides varies, with larger rides like the Sling Shot costing $35 per ride. Rides in the Kidaway area of the park cost $1 per ride or $25 for a 28-ticket sheet. Save money on rides by going during early bird hours.

minnesota state fair rides
Photo from September 2006 of the Sky Glider at the Minnesota State Fair. CC & GFDL. Photo by JonaThunder.

What Time Do Rides Open at the Minnesota State Fair?

Rides open at 9 am in Kidaway, and 10 am at Might Midway each day of the fair.

What is the Best Day to go to the Minnesota State Fair?

The Minnesota State Fair can get crowded, especially on weekends. We recommend going on a weekday, and going between the hours of 7 am, and 9 am so you can enjoy the fair before it gets too crowded and before it gets too hot!

 
 
 

Written by Hope Davis

Writer, because it's the only way daydreaming pays.

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