It's that time of year again, when hundreds of thousands of visitors converge on the Minnesota State Fair, running Thursday, Aug. 25, through Monday, Sept. 5.
While taking in the "Great Minnesota Get Together," University of Minnesota Extension invites fairgoers to check out more than 6,000 4-H exhibits, workshops and hands-on demonstrations, and meet with Master Gardeners in the Agriculture Horticulture Building.
Extension 4-H exhibits
Visit the 4-H Building, located at the intersection of Cosgrove Street and Wright Avenue, where thousands of Extension 4-H'ers showcase the knowledge and skills they've acquired throughout the year in hundreds of project areas. See impressive exhibits by youth from all over the state, ranging from aerospace to wildlife biology. Take in a daily performing arts show or check out 4-H's version of "Project Runway," the 4-H Fashion Revue.
Take a stroll through the animal barns, where some 2,200 "blue ribbon" kids exhibit livestock during the State Fair's first four days, demonstrating their knowledge and skills with beef, dairy, swine, sheep, poultry, goats and rabbits.
The 4-H Building also features numerous hands-on learning opportunities for kids. Youngsters can control underwater robots while learning about electricity and buoyancy, or take airborne tours of the Twin Cities from the pilot's seat of a flight simulator, to name just a few.
See the Minnesota 4-H website for daily highlights from the State Fair.
Social media enthusiasts can join the conversation about 4-H at the Minnesota State Fair on Twitter. Follow Minnesota 4-H on Twitter and use "@MN4H" in tweets commenting on 4-H exhibits, workshops and demonstrations. Also watch for retweets from Minnesota 4-H participants sharing what they're learning and doing at the fair.
Be sure to check out the new Twitter walls in the 4-H Building and Cattle Barn.
Extension Master Gardeners
Visit with University of Minnesota Extension Master Gardener volunteers in the Agriculture Horticulture Building, located at the corner of Judson Avenue and Underwood Street. Back for their 35th year, Master Gardeners are available to answer questions every day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Find information on emerald ash borer, pick up a discount coupon for the new 2012 Minnesota Gardening Calendar, and get answers to your questions about lawns, flowers, fruits, landscapes, trees, shrubs, pest management and more.
Also watch Master Gardeners present gardening education throughout the day on the Agriculture Horticulture Building stage, The Dirt. The stage is located on the northeast side of the building, next to the Skyride.
Maroon and Gold Day
Sunday, Aug. 28 is Maroon and Gold Day, when State Fair visitors will be able to meet new university President Eric Kaler and his wife, Karen, proudly wear their maroon and gold attire and see the U of M Marching Band in the State Fair parade.
Watch President Kaler try his hand at one of the new 4-H aquatic robotics exhibits--maneuvering an underwater remote operated vehicle--and visit with 4-H youth about this unique approach to water quality education.
Also stop by the university's main building and stage, located at the corner of Dan Patch Avenue and Underwood Street, for trivia and Goldy Gopher appearances.
See the U's State Fair web page for a complete schedule and map of university attractions and events.