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Minnesota State Fair Breaks Overall Attendance Record (And More Fun Facts from the 2018 Great Minnesota Get-Together)

Including how many animals were born at the CHS Miracle at Birth Center and total attendance from this year’s Grandstand performances.

Minnesota State Fair Breaks Overall Attendance Record (And More Fun Facts from the 2018 Great Minnesota Get-Together)
Photo courtesy of the Minnesota State Fair

It’s official: more visitors flooded into the Minnesota State Fair’s grounds in 2018 than any other year in its 159-year history.

In fact, for the first time ever, more than 2 million people made the trek to St. Paul to join in on the festivities. Along the way, five single-day attendance records were set, as well as the all-time record for number of visitors in a single day.

Saturday, September 1 drew in a whopping 270,426 people — the best-ever crowd, topping 2016’s second Saturday that had over 260,000 attendees.

Buoyed by attendance records on Thursday, August 23 (122,695 visitors); Saturday, August 25 (222,194 visitors); Wednesday, August 29 (144,940 visitors); and Thursday, August 30 (156,764 visitors), the Minnesota State Fair pulled in a total of 2,046,533 visitors over its 12-day stretch.

Last year the fair missed the 2 million visitor mark by less than 3,000 visitors.

With this year’s Great Minnesota Get-Together in the rearview, here are some takeaways to hold you over until 2019:

  • The Purple Ribbon Auction on Saturday, August 25 set seven new price records. More than $690,000 was raised to benefit youth programs in the state.
  • The CHS Miracle of Birth Center introduced 217 newborn animals to the world, including 157 piglets, 12 calves and 42 lambs. For the first time ever, goats gave birth in the Miracle of Birth Center: to six kids, to be exact.
  • Grandstand attendance amounted to 113,937 people. Four shows — ones headlined by Sugarland, Trampled By Turtles, The Beach Boys, and Old Dominion — each sold out.
  • Twelve vendors were recognized with 2018 Best Awards for having an outstanding attraction or exhibit. The winners include: The Anchor Coffee House, Big Bamboo Fun House, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, The Hanger, Haunted Castle Dark Ride, Minnesota United FC, Nordic Waffles, Paddle North, Rainbow Midwest Inc., The Vintage Tin, Whatnot Boutique, and Whopper Water.

Next year’s Minnesota State Fair is scheduled to run from August 22 through Labor Day, September 2.

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