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University of Minnesota Extension

See U of M Extension at the 2019 Minnesota State Fair!

August 21, 2019

If you go to the "Great Minnesota Get-Together," be sure to participate in fun and educational University of Minnesota Extension opportunities. Extension discovers science-based solutions, delivers practical education and engages Minnesotans to build a better future.

Where to see Extension at the fair

4-H building and barns

Keep up with 4-H at the State Fair, or use the free "4-H at the Minnesota State Fair" app for event schedules, Arts-In

two youth judging a black rabbit

performance times, results, announcements and maps. The first weekend of the fair is livestock encampment. Highlights below are just a sampling of the many 4-H activities.

  • Ongoing: Nearly 6,000 youth participate, showing exhibits, performing in shows and showing livestock. These activities feature the knowledge and skills 4-H'ers have acquired throughout the year. About 2,200 "blue ribbon" kids exhibit livestock in the animal barns. 
  • Ongoing: Exciting scientific activities to try in the 4-H building include virtual reality and Rube Goldberg challenges. Watch "Chef for a day" cooking presentations, offered twice daily.
  • Ongoing: Augmented reality invasive species exhibit.
  • Aug. 23, 2:00 p.m.: 4-H beef championship, Warner Coliseum.
  • Aug. 24, 8:30 a.m.: Chicken BBQ Contest , East side of Warner Coliseum.
  • Aug. 24, 5:45 p.m.: Purple Ribbon auction in the Compeer Arena.
  • Aug. 24, 6:30 p.m.: Filmfest for 4-H video project, Harkness Stage in the 4-H building
  • Aug. 25, 10:30 a.m.: Poultry competition and crowning of the eighth annual 4-H Poultry Prince and Princess (crowning after last round).
  • Aug. 25, 10:30 a.m.: Dairy showcase, Compeer Arena.

U of M building

  • Sept. 1, 9 a.m.-9 p.m.: The bunnies are back! 4-H youth share what they have learned through their projects with rabbits.
  • Sept. 2, 10 a.m.: Gary Wyatt, Extension natural resources educator, will present "Woody vegetation identification and control" on the outdoor stage.
  • Sept. 2, 11 a.m.: Gary Wyatt, Extension natural resources educator, will present "Edibles from the woods or backyard" on the outdoor stage.

Dan Patch Park (next to Grand Stand)

two women at mental health awareness day at Minnesota state fair
  • Aug. 26, all day: Mental Health Awareness Day, Extension’s rural stress task force and family development team, and 40 other organizations, sharing mental health and wellness resources. Includes stage performances, music, demonstrations, yoga, mental wellness activities and more.

Eco Experience building

  • Daily: Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) “Growing Clean Energy in Minnesota,” booth in the Energy section.
  • Sept. 2, 4 p.m.: Gary Wyatt, Extension natural resources educator, will present "Edibles from the woods or backyard." 

Agriculture-Horticulture building

  • Daily, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Do you have an apple that needs identification? Weeds out of control? Japanese Beetles moved
    Master Gardeners at State Fair booth
    into your neighborhood? Trained and knowledgeable Extension Master Gardener volunteers will be answering questions in their booth in the CFANS wing of the building.
  • Aug. 26, 1:30 p.m.: The Honey Bees program team, including Gary Reuter, Extension entomologist, will show off a "bee beard" in the Bee 7 Honey exhibit.
  • Aug. 28-30, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and 5-7 p.m.: Karen Terry and the Extension water resources team demonstrate a stream model, an interactive chance to see how water, and the things it carries, moves through the landscape.
  • Sept. 2, 5 p.m.: Gary Wyatt, Extension natural resources educator, will present "Edibles from the woods or backyard" on the Dirt stage.

DNR building

  • Daily: Master Naturalists answer questions about wildlife in Minnesota, wildlife wing. 
  • Aug. 25, 3 p.m., Gary Reuter, Extension entomologist, "Honey bees, beekeeping and research," DNR stage.
  • August 28, 2:30 p.m, "Ask the bug nerds" with Jeff Hahn, Extension entomologist and his counterparts at the DNR and MDA. They appear at the Garden Stage, next to the DNR building below the fire tower.

Minnesota Public Radio and tpt

  • Aug. 23, 11 a.m.: Mark Seeley, Extension climatologist and professor emeritus, will appear on tpt Almanac at the MPR booth. 
  • Aug. 30, 10 a.m.: Seeley will broadcast the 23rd annual Minnesota Weather Quiz on MPR with host Tom Crann from Dan Patch Park. 


  • Aug. 24, 8 a.m.: Julie Weisenhorn, Extension horticulturist, and turf post-doc Jon Trappe provide answers to yard and garden questions from  callers and audience members. Live from the fair on WCCO Smart Garden with host Denny Long. 
  • Sept. 2, 8 a.m.: Mary Meyer, Extension horticulturist, and turf professor Eric Watkins provide answers to yard and garden questions from callers and audience members. Live from the fair on WCCO Smart Garden with host Denny Long.
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