The State Fair offers facilities and programs that celebrate agricultural excellence and connect today’s consumers with agriculture. Many State Fair visitors are several generations removed from the family farms of our grandparents’ generation. Donors who restrict gifts to Agricultural Education will help improve State Fair agricultural and horticultural facilities, programs and competitions.
Agriculture Horticulture Building
The Foundation is seeking donors interested in supporting capital and program improvements for this flagship facility. Such support would provide continuous improvements over time for our 1.8 million annual visitors to see and experience the very best in horticulture and agriculture.
The Agriculture Horticulture Building is an Art Deco classic structure from the 1940s. Condition and preservation reports affirm that the building has a sound structure, features prestigious and unique architecture, and is worthy of preservation and upgrades. This includes the need for energy efficient lighting, window replacement for natural light, new display housing, interior painting and improvements to the supporting facilities for this 60,000 square feet of public space. The building design includes exterior relief art, a central rotunda with natural light tower, eight exhibit rooms and eight street-to-rotunda access halls – commonly referred to as the “Ag Hort Spokes.”
Our State Fair agricultural and horticultural programs are as popular as ever, and reflect a breadth of involvement. In this building the State Fair has outstanding competitions and displays, including holiday trees, honey and bee culture, farm crops, flowers, fruits and wines, vegetables and potatoes.
To inquire about contributing to this project, contact Kay Cady at (651) 288-4324 or email@example.com.
AgStar Arena – A New Livestock and Equine Facility
AgStar Arena opened April 27, 2012, on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. This new equine and livestock facility was supported with contributions from the Foundation and named for AgStar Financial Services in recognition of their leadership gift.
AgStar Arena, a 27,000 square foot facility, is used during the State Fair by 4-H, FFA and State Fair open class exhibitors, complementing activities at the Lee and Rose Warner Coliseum and the Horse and Cattle Barns. It is also available for extended seasonal use for equine and livestock shows. The arena is located on Judson Avenue east of the Horse Barn and replaces the 1960s Judging Arena and Horse Annex.
More than 400 donors contributed $900,000 toward the new Minnesota State Fair Moo Booth, which debuted at the 2009 State Fair. The dairy and beef education exhibit, located in the historic Cattle Barn, has undergone an extensive renovation. Visitors follow the farm-to-table process by viewing cattle as they’re milked and tended, participating in educational demonstrations, seeing today’s farm technology in action and much more. Leadership donors are: Land O’Lakes, Inc., Davisco Foods Inc., Midwest Dairy Association, Minnesota Corn Growers Association and Ecolab.
CHS Miracle of Birth and FFA Center
The CHS Miracle of Birth and FFA Center is one of the most popular exhibits on the fairgrounds. Fair guests learn about modern agricultural practices as over 200 calves, lambs and pigs plus countless chicks and ducklings are born at the exhibit each year. The State Fair Foundation reached its goal of $1.5 million with leadership gifts from CHS Inc., Christensen Farms, AgStar Financial Services, Minnesota Pork Board, Minnesota Soybean Growers and Minnesota Corn Growers.
Agriculture Horticulture and 4-H Towers
Foundation contributions from Bert and Iverne Enestvedt and others served to restore the historic towers on the Agriculture Horticulture Building and on the 4-H Building. These towers are architectural icons for fairground facilities used for youth development and educational competitions in horticulture and more.
State Fair Story
“The focus of the fair has changed. I could see the focus changing from agricultural to technology areas, but I hope things like the farms and animals always stay. I'm just a city boy, and the first time I ever touched a cow was at the State Fair. Many people don't see the farming way of life – the fair brings it out.”
- Bruce Chesin