The fall air left southern Indiana just as quickly as it came. I’ve always loved the changing of the seasons, especially when the hot summers fade into the cooler months. This year, though, I’m hardcore missing my Indiana summer. I spent most of my summer in Freiburg, which was fantastic, except for the fact that the “real summer” weather didn’t kick in until mid-July.
One of the first things I did when I got back home was go to the Indiana State Fair. I’ve been going to the State Fair since I was a kid, and I’ve always loved it. It’s sort of expected that the weather during the state fair will include oven-like temperatures and enough humidity to make my hair look like it belongs in an ‘80s movie. This year didn’t disappoint.
For those of you living in Indiana, you’re probably thinking, “Um, Claire? Why are you writing a whole post on our State Fair?” Because, my Hoosier friends, NO ONE ON EITHER COAST KNOWS WHAT GOES ON IN INDIANA.
Don’t worry, I’m here to remedy the situation.
In high school, I took voice lessons from the most amazing woman from New Jersey. For some reason, it shocked me when she told me New Jersey didn’t have a state fair. It makes sense now since Jersey isn’t really known for its agriculture, but still. Anyone who hasn’t experienced the glory of a state fair really hasn’t lived to their full potential yet.
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we? (cue the “Sound of Music” soundtrack) After driving to the fairground, you’re welcomed by a huge sign proclaiming your entrance into the state fair, and you find yourself suddenly swelling up with an indescribable sense of Hoosier pride.
What really happens at the State Fair is lots of food, mostly of the deep fried variety. Last year, they had a donut burger, which was a hamburger with all the fixings sandwiched between two Krispy Kreme donuts. To answer your question, no, I definitely did not buy that.
Once we’ve feasted at the pork tent, we always make a stop at each of the animal barns. I’m particularly fond of cows myself, but I don’t discriminate in my love of cute animals. I mean seriously, look at this sheep. How happy is this darn sheep?? I was bummed this year because we got there too late in the week to see the ducks and rabbits (another family favorite).
The Indiana State Fair also has two buildings dedicated to local artwork and crafts, which is always fun to look at. Sadly, I couldn’t take any pictures of the work because of liability issues. So let’s look at more cute animals, shall we?
And you really can’t avoid seeing all the tractors when you go to the state fair either. I always go with my dad, so he usually tries to tell me about tractor-y stuff (not that I could repeat anything he says). The only thing I can tell you is the tried and true family motto: “If it ain’t red, leave it in the shed.”
To wrap up a long day of animal petting and art admiration, we always stop by the Dairy Barn for a few American-sized scoops of ice cream. Eat, cool off, drive home. Before you know it, your day is over and you have to wait another year for the next Indiana State Fair.
Do you have a state fair where you’re from? Ours revolves around agriculture and livestock for the most part, but I love it so much. And for those of you from the coasts, what do you think happens in Indiana? I’m curious to hear what you think. To make you feel better, I thought that everyone called California “Cali” until my friend Maddy told me no sane Californian actually says that. Oops.