We go the Maryland State fair and the York Fair every year. Last year we went to the Ohio State fair on our way back from a Midwest road trip. Our favorite food item at the fairs is ice cream from the dairy exhibits. The ice cream from Ohio was excellent and the portions were huge. We look to see who gives out the biggest portion and we try to queue up to that server.
The Ohio State Fair is going on now and while I love fair food, I have a special fondness for the barbequed lamb sandwiches sold by the Ohio lamb growers association at the food pavillion on the fairgrounds.
The beef, pork, poultry and dairy producers also have booths in the pavillion, but I’m a lamb guy. Still, the best thing about the food pavillion is the fact that it’s air-conditioned, and a great place to wait for my grandson and his pal to check in with me every couple of hours.
Now, although I’ve stated my favorite, I still have to have the sausage, onion and pepper sandwiches, and of course the elephant ears and funnel cakes. And, just to prove that I’m an equal-opportunity fair-food eater, I always manage to eat at least one of the ubiquitous corndogs.
I’ve heard, although I can’t prove it, that there are rides and games on the midway, and some animals, too, somewhere. Who knows. Maybe next year I’ll see them, and of course the butter cow at the dairy exhibit.
I have to have a lemonade, corn dog, and funnel cake when at the state fair in Kentucky.
I used to be on the radio in Indianapolis and always loved getting to broadcast from the Indiana State Fair. It was certainly a money-losing proposition for me, since I think I ate more than they paid me for the broadcast!
Beer-battered halibut at the Alaska state fair…..only three more weeks to wait!
Whoa, don’t get me started! These are the "must-have"s for me at the Wisconsin State Fair, which just ended. They are all from booths set up by state ag boards (potato council, pork producers org, etc), not by commercial food vendors:
– HOT baked potatoes, available with your choice of any or all: butter, sour cream, chili, salsa, cheese sauce (I prefer butter, sour cream and salsa)
– ice cream sundae with cherries or maple syrup on top
– grilled pork chop sandwich
– cotton candy made with maple sugar rather than white sugar (umm!)
– Flavored milk (my favorite is chocolate, of course)
– Spicy lamb sausage sandwich
and, last but DEFINITELY not least
– a cream puff, sprinkled with powdered sugar. The bakers associaton makes these right at the fair, with windows in the work space so that you can watch the large-scale production of big cream puffs with mounds of fresh, sweetened whipped cream inside. They sell over 365,000 of them every year, more than 42 every minute that the fair is open. Needless to say, this is the signature food item at the fair.
I’ve been to the Minnesota fair, too. They pride themselves on the number of things that you can buy on a stick, and their most popular food item is (are?) mini-donuts.
Same Old, Same Old out here at the Los Angeles County Fair. Food seems to never change. But I fondly remember French Fries and Gravy in a Cone Shaped Cup at the Little Rock State Fair in the 70’s. Good Stuff…..
The Iowa State Fair is up and running–with a pork chop on a stick, followed by two visits to the Budweiser tent. Then a foot long hot dog with grilled onions, peppers, kraut and mustard. Maybe one visit to the nearest beer tent. Lastly, some fancy food at the sheep barn– lamb kebobs. After some needed walking and resting, dessert is at the "crescenti tent," a fried Italian pastry filled with cream cheese and strawberry jam.
Indiana’s Fair is almost done, and kentucky’s starts this Thursday. We try to get to the KY Fair each year for a day. Must have’s include Corn on the Cob…and Funnel Cakes. With no kids along we don’t do the Midway, but the photo exhibits, food judging and crafts etc always draw our attention.
I agree that the sausage, peppers, and onion sandwiches rarely taste as good as they smell. I’ve had better luck with the giant fried onions at State Fairs. And lately, the french fries have been pretty good as well as corn on the cob.
One thing that I always get is the Italian sausages with onions, peppers and some red sauce. Rarely does it live up to its smell. Most of the time when it is not up to what I expect, I toss it and walk to the next stand that hits my interest. I hate to waste calories on something I do not like.
Fresh cotton candy that is flavored is always purchased.
I use to get the giant turkey legs, but again, they rarely are as good as they look.
The Shriners and Masons often have a tent that does beans, onions and cornbread, smells good but that brings on other problems.
I generally leave after that and stop at the Krispey Kreme outside the gate and get six hot to go and maybe stop at the Krystal to get three cheeseburgers.
Paul E. Smith
I love those ears of corn on the cob…and the cotton candy! I went to every Tennessee State Fair while I was in college and of course ate everything fattening/nasty/strange that I walked by on the Midway.[xx(]
We made our annual visit to the Illinois State Fair this weekend to eat and observe food on the hoof as it were. A wonderful day of high claorie, high cholestrol enjoyment. Corn dogs, shrimp-on-a-stick, gyros, honey ice cream, cream puffs, funnel cakes. We passed up fried Twinkies and candy bars, however. And we left the cotton candy, etc. for the kids.
How ’bout food selections at other state fairs?
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