The Minnesota State Fair
The Great Minnesota Get-Together unofficially marks the end of summer, but we in the Twin Cities still have a lot left to do before things freeze over. From a night to remember Prince to a bucket list of new foods to try, this year’s fair (running Aug. 25 through Labor Day) has plenty to celebrate.
No matter who’s performing or what’s going, the food steals the show at the State Fair each year. And while there are tried-and-true treats — a bucket full of Sweet Martha’s cookies comes to mind — there are plenty of new eats to taste this year.
A fair staple gets a North Star State twist when a ground sausage center is wrapped with blueberries, apples, wild rice, maple syrup and cayenne — fried and on a stick, of course.
Where: Gass Station Grill on Cooper Street between Dan Patch and Judson avenues
The Rabbit Hole, known for its ambitious new creations, is serving a fish-shaped buttermilk miso waffle cone with balsamic-roasted strawberry compote and vanilla ice cream, topped with a strawberry and graham cracker crumble.
Where: The Rabbit Hole at the Midtown Global Market booth (Aug. 25–30 only)
Blue Plate Restaurant Company’s State Fair restaurant is adding a pulled pork bowl topped with rice, black beans, spinach, charred salsa and fried onion strings.
Where: The Blue Barn at West End Market south of the History & Heritage Center
United in Purple
The State Fair is honoring Prince with an evening of the great late musician’s music. Fairgoers are encouraged to wear purple, plus the first 5,000 guests will get glow bracelets and the first 7,500 through the gates will get buttons after 5 p.m. Prince’s personal DJ, GenerationNOW’s DJ Dudley D, will lead a Prince Party in the Park at Carousel Park from 8 p.m.–11:30 p.m. The night’s fireworks will also be set entirely to Prince music and feature a pyrotechnic tribute.
Where: Minnesota State Fairgrounds, 1265 Snelling Ave., St. Paul
When: Friday, Aug. 26 from 5 p.m.–close
Cost: Included with admission
The Minnesota Show with Garrison Keillor
Garrison Keillor may be handing over the reins of “A Prairie Home Companion,” but he’ll host a new special broadcast performance at the State Fair dubbed “The Minnesota Show.” The two-hour program, which will be recorded live and then broadcast on Minnesota Public Radio, will feature many of Keillor’s popular segments, like “Guy Noir, Private Eye” and “News from Lake Wobegon.” It’ll also star regulars Sue Scott, Tim Russell and Fred Newman.
Where: The Grandstand
When: Friday, Sept. 2 at 7:45 p.m.
Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour
The shorts of the Sundance Film Festival’s Short Film Tour are only limited by their runtime, not their brilliance. This year’s tour showcases a diverse range of film, from stop motion animated film “Edmond,” a nine-minute short about an oddly lovable man with cannibalistic urges from director Nina Gantz, to “Bacon & God’s Wrath,” a mini-documentary by Sol Friedman profiling a Jewish woman trying bacon for the first time. The 95-minute tour program includes eight shorts and is presented by IFP Minnesota.
Where: Bryant Lake Bowl, 810 W. Lake St.
When: Aug. 26–28
Minneapolis Greek Festival
The Minneapolis Greek Festival returns to celebrate everything Greek — the food, the handmade desserts, the music and more — all weekend long. The annual fest at St. Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church will feature church tours, a Greek Boutique, a kid’s area with inflatables and the Courtyard Café. On Friday night, Chloe’s Fight 5K Toga Run/Family Walk and Kid’s Toga Race will have toga-clad runners going around Lake Calhoun (registration at chloesfight.org). The festival runs Friday and Saturday from noon–10 p.m. and Sunday from noon–6 p.m.
Where: St. Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church, 3450 Irving Ave. S.
When: Sept. 9–11
Blooma, a yoga studio and women’s wellness center on Lyndale Avenue, is celebrating the belly with Bellyrama at the Lake Harriet Bandshell. For yogis, the morning festival will have yoga for all from 9 a.m.–10:15 a.m. and kids yoga from 10:30 a.m.–11 a.m. Bellyrama will feature plenty of activities — face painting, henna tattoos and even belly mapping — plus a live DJ and food.
Where: Lake Harriet Bandshell, 4135 W. Lake Harriet Pkwy.
When: Saturday, Sept. 10 from 9 a.m.–12 p.m.