Iowa State Fair Opens Fighting Hunger, Honoring Fair Dedication PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Lori Chappell   
Thursday, 01 August 2013 13:32

DES MOINES, IA (07/31/2013)(readMedia)-- On opening day, August 8, Fairgoers will start the 11-day celebration by packaging meals and helping the Fair honor the service of its loyal Fair supporters. The 2013 Fair runs August 8-18.

Meal Packaging Event

From 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. 1500 volunteers will package 250,000 meals to help alleviate life-threatening hunger around the world. The event is part of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions' "Dream Big" food drive by fairs and festivals throughout the world. Together, participants hope to collect 20 million pounds of food – enough to fill the daily food needs of nearly six million people.

Volunteer shifts are currently filled; however, the Fair is also collecting monetary donations to help purchase supplies. To donate, visit

Meals from the Heartland is a non-profit organization committed to providing meals for food-insecure families around the world. Since their initial launch in 2007, the organization has packaged more than 30 million meals which have been distributed locally through Iowa food pantry partners as well as shipped throughout the world.

Opening Ceremonies

At the west entrance of the Cattle Barn, the Fair will hold opening ceremonies and honor the Clearfield Lions for their 50 years of service. The club has improved the experience for countless Fair campers by providing easy, accessible transportation between their campsites and the events on the grounds since 1964. The Fair will commemorate their years of service to the Fair as well as their philanthropic efforts throughout Iowa.

The Clearfield Lions will also kick off this year's Fair as co-Parade Marshals with John Putney, outgoing Executive Director of the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation. Putney has held this position since the Blue Ribbon Foundation started in 1993 and will retire effective March 2014.

The parade is set Wednesday, August 7, to begin at 6:15 p.m. in downtown Des Moines. The Iowa State Fair Parade is the state's largest, showcasing nearly 200 floats, animals, vehicles, novelty and performing units. Staging will take place at the State Capitol complex. Parade entrants will then travel west on Grand Avenue to 13th Street. Dispersion will take place between 13th and 18th Streets.


Fun Fair activities can also be found in the day long selection of contests, food, games and entertainment including performances by The Nadas, Home Free, Blue Öyster Cult and The Farm. Christian music favorites Casting Crowns and Jeremy Camp will perform on the Grandstand stage at 8 p.m. Tickets for the Grandstand show are $30 (plus convenience charges) and are available now through Ticketmaster outlets and the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office.

A complete listing of opening day activities is available at

"Nothing Compares" to the 2013 Iowa State Fair, August 8-18. Save money on advance admission tickets now through August 7 (while supplies last). The Fairgrounds are located at East 30th and East University Avenue, just 10 minutes east of downtown Des Moines. For more information, call 800/545-FAIR or visit

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