DES MOINES, IA (07/21/2015)(readMedia)-- "Nothing Compares" to free entertainment at the Iowa State Fair! Be sure to "Find A New Path" to the newly remodeled MidAmerican Energy Stage this August 13-23 and enjoy a variety of free acts and entertainment.

Formerly known as the Fairview Stage, the MidAmerican Energy Stage, located on Expo Hill, is currently undergoing renovations and will be complete in time for the Fair. The stage will debut with new restrooms and additional seating so Fairgoers can enjoy the array of acts such as 38 Special, Village People, Sir-Mix-A-Lot, Home Free, and Here Come the Mummies.

Demolition to the stage began in fall 2014, and other additions include dressing rooms and a loading dock. The renovations are possible because of a donation from MidAmerican Energy and Iowa Realty.

"Thank you to MidAmerican Energy for the support with this project. The Iowa State Fair would not be what it is today without their generosity and the generosity of all Iowans across the state," said Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation Executive Director Peter Cownie. "We are so pleased to have the support which will allow for a better experience for future generations of Fairgoers."

In addition to the free music acts, Fairgoers can also enjoy the Opening Ceremonies and Ribbon Cutting at 9 a.m. on August 13 at the MidAmerican Stage, as well as special events like the 4x4 Stomper Pull, held on August 22 at 9:30 a.m.

For a list of all entertainment and events at the 2015 Iowa State Fair, visit our website at http://www.iowastatefair.org/daily-events/daily-schedule/.

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News from Iowa State Fair

DES MOINES, IA (07/20/2015)(readMedia)-- Begin your "Fair Tour" with a wide variety of new discoveries to taste, watch and experience at this year's Iowa State Fair. New Fair foods, attractions and entertainment await you in addition to the many traditional Fair favorites.

Foods

This year's Fair foods feature over a dozen new items. New treats include food contest finalists Ultimate Bacon Brisket Bomb, Corn in a Cup, and Toasted Coconut Caramel Cluster. Try them all and vote for your favorite. Fair Squares, the official Fair treat, will also debut the newest flavor, Chocolate Marshmallow Malt, a tasty treat comprised of marshmallows, chocolate chips, cocoa puffs and malted milk powder.

Attractions

Whether you're a lifelong fairgoer or a day-tripping tourist, adventure and excitement are waiting for you at the 2015 Iowa State Fair. Our Fair experts are already hard at work scouting out the best spots and unearthing hidden gems to customize a tour that is perfect for you and your travel companions. Whether you're a foodie, an avid animal lover, an entertainment junkie or just someone looking for the nooks and crannies around the Fairgrounds, you'll be able to leave knowing you saw the hottest spots around the grounds. Audio tours will be live starting August 13.

The first phase of Ruan Plaza, a pedestrian friendly plaza connecting Grand Avenue to the Richard O. Jacobson Exhibition Center, will be complete for this year's Fair. The Plaza will feature a boulevard area with improved utilities and access for vendors and exhibitors. This beautification project will also include 20-foot wide walkways to allow for easier pathways from one end of the Fairgrounds to the other. Phases two and three will resume after the 2015 Fair.

Stop by the John Deere Agriculture Building to experience "It Takes an Iowan," a new interactive exhibit focused on Iowans as leaders in the ongoing effort of providing food for the nation and the world. The exhibit will highlight the advancement of technology to better produce food, as well as education about agriculture around the world. Learn that Iowans are not only leaders in feeding the world, but also in education, technology, communication, legislation and transportation.

Be sure to stop by the Patty and Jim Cownie Cultural Center this year and visit local artist Ben Schuh as he creates a one-of-a-kind mural in the atrium during the Fair. The mural will feature both naturally-occurring and man-made points of interest in Iowa such as wind turbines, the High Trestle Trail Bridge, 4-H exhibitors, farmsteads and much more. Stop by to see the mural come to life during the 11 days of the Fair.

Runners and joggers alike will have the opportunity to experience a 5K race like no other. The ninth annual Fairgrounds 5K, which has traditionally been held in November, is during the Fair this year and will take place on Saturday, August 22nd at 7:30 a.m. The route will take you down the Grand Concourse, through the hills of the Campgrounds, and along Rock Island. You'll see vendors, campers and livestock on your adventure across the Fairgrounds. It's a perfect chance to get your exercise in while supporting the Blue Ribbon Foundation and their renovation efforts.

Stage Entertainment

The new MidAmerican Energy Stage, formerly known as Fairview Stage, will debut at this year's Fair - complete with new restrooms and additional seating to enjoy a variety of entertainment. The larger stage will host some of our best free entertainment yet.

This year's line-up features southern rock band 38 Special. The group boasts more than twenty million in record sales, with hits such as "Hold On Loosely," "Second Chance," "Back Where You Belong" and more. Other rock groups include Head East, Autograph, Get the Led Out, and Steelheart.

After thirty years together, Restless Heart is still enjoying one of the most successful careers in country music history. With hits that include "I'll Still Be Loving You" and "When She Cries," their success includes six number one hits and the 1990 Vocal Group of the Year from the Academy of Country Music Awards. Other country acts include Haley & Michaels, Dan + Shay, Raelynn and Big Smo.

Back by popular demand, the self-proclaimed "Glee-meets-Stomp" group Vocal Trash will perform daily on the MidAmerican Energy Stage. Also returning is funk band Here Come the Mummies and Hairball, the world's ultimate 80s arena rock impersonation act.

"Nothing Compares" to the excitement that awaits Fairgoers August 13-23.

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (07/14/2015)(readMedia)-- The 2015 Iowa State Fair will feature expanded agricultural education including new activities focused on swine, dairy cattle and aquaculture. Fair Tour embarks this year August 13-23.

This year, Fairgoers can stop by the John Deere Agriculture Building to experience "It Takes an Iowan," a new interactive exhibit focused on Iowans as leaders in the ongoing effort to provide food for the nation and the world. The exhibit will highlight the advancement of technology to better produce food, as well as family friendly exhibits about agriculture around the world. The new display highlights Iowans as leaders in feeding the world, but also in education, technology, communication, legislation, and transportation.

A short walk from the Agriculture Building, the Animal Learning Center will feature the "Thank a Farmer Wall." The "Thank A Farmer Wall" invites anyone to leave a message for the hard-working farmers of Iowa. Fairgoers can also stop at the new Aquaculture display where they can learn about the new and growing industry of farm raised fish production in Iowa.

Located next to the Animal Learning Center, Little Hands on the Farm is celebrating its 11th Anniversary. Through this interactive adventure, kids can learn what it is like to do chores on a farm and earn play money to spend at the General Store.

Just north of the Animal Learning Center is Kids' Zone featuring the Blue Ribbon Kids' Club Tent and Seed Survivor. Seed Survivor teaches kids how seeds interact with the environment. Each participant can plant their own sunflower seed to take home. Blue Ribbon Kids' events begin at 10 a.m. every weekday and feature make and take crafts for kids based around day-specific themes like turkeys, Fair food and llamas.

The Boulevard of Dairy Breeds, located in the John and Emily Putney Family Cattle Barn, will focus on the six main breeds of dairy cattle in Iowa with new hands-on activities, cattle, baby calves and the favorite, "I Milked a Cow" display.

Returning for the second year at the Fair is the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Ag Commodity Carnival located in the Bruce L. Rastetter 4-H Exhibits Building. Aimed at third through eighth graders, this activity teaches kids what it takes to raise a pig and how to discover profit or loss. The Carnival will be operating August 13-22 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Also returning to the 2015 Fair are kid-friendly favorites; Ag-Venture Discovery Trail and Grape Getaway.

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (07/06/2015)(readMedia)-- With numerous ways to purchase Iowa State Fair tickets "Nothing Compares" to the fun found on the Fairgrounds August 13-23. For fairgoers planning ahead, the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office is now open to offer discounted tickets for admission, rides and more.

The Iowa State Fair Ticket Office, located in the Administration Building on the Fairgrounds, is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to Noon on Saturday. Walk-up orders will be available until August 6. Cash, check, money order, Visa, MasterCard or Discover are accepted. All offers good while supplies last.

Advance Admission

Adult and children's advance admission tickets are available at the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office, and online at iowastatefair.org as a print your own fee-free option. Adult advance admission tickets are just $8 (ages 12 and older; regularly $11), and children's admission tickets are $4 in advance (ages 6-11; regularly $5). Children ages 5 and under are admitted free every day. Tickets may also be purchased at participating Iowa Fareway Stores, Hy-Vee and Hy-Vee Drugstores. Online mail orders placed after Sunday, August 2, will not be mailed, but will be held at will call. Tickets are good any one Fair day.

Fairgoers can enjoy an even bigger benefit when buying early. Advance admission tickets have a coupon for a free small Potato Olé® at participating Iowa-area Taco John's. Coupon expires 9/30/15. See store for details.

Punch Cards

Buy a convenient Punch Card with 11 days of adult Fair admission for $88. Each punch is good for one admission to the Fair. Cards may be used by individuals or families. Punch Cards may be purchased at the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office or online at iowastatefair.org (a five percent processing fee applies). Punch Cards are only available until August 12 or while supplies last.

Fair Play Packs

This value-packed deal, including specials on admission, food and select rides, is perfect for employee incentives or Fair-loving families! Fair Play Packs are available for purchase now at the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office or online at iowastatefair.org (a five percent processing fee applies). Visit iowastatefair.org for details. Must be purchased by August 12 or while supplies last.

Midway Savings

Save on the Midway with a Midway Pack, which includes a set of five Midway ride tickets for only $14. Each ticket is good for one ride. Available now at the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office or online at iowastatefair.org (a five percent processing fee applies). Midway Mega Passes, good for unlimited rides any one Fair day, are also available. Visit iowastatefair.org for details. Fair admission must be purchased separately. Must be purchased by August 12 or while supplies last.

Food Tickets

Buy a set of five $1 food tickets good for food or beverage purchases at any Fairgrounds concession, excluding the Midway. Cost is $5 per set, and they may be purchased through the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office or online at iowastatefair.org (a five percent processing fee applies). Available while supplies last.

# # #

Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (07/02/2015)(readMedia)-- We want to know what makes the Iowa State Fair special to you. Did you meet your spouse at the Iowa State Fair? Do you have an Iowa State Fair family tradition? Are there concerts you must see and food you must eat each year? Each experience at the Iowa State Fair is unique and the Iowa State Fair is looking for "My State Fair" stories like this :

Andrea Reece, a 26 year old from Southern Iowa, has been attending the Iowa State Fair for as long as she can remember. Along with thousands of other Fairgoers, Andrea's family, including her parents, sisters, aunts, uncles and cousins, spend the duration of the Fair camping in the Iowa State Fair campgrounds, a tradition they've treasured for decades.

"I remember my grandma making the trip every year on Older Iowan's Day to spend the day with her granddaughters," said Reece. "Some of the highlights of the day were seeing the butter cow, riding the big yellow slide and Ye Old Mill, eating at the pork tent, and buying taffy." During her grandmother's visit, Andrea and her family would also visit Grandfather's Barn to see the baby animals, catch part of the Bill Riley Talent Show and then cool off on a warm August day by playing water balloon wars against her sisters.

Every year Andrea also makes sure to walk through the Varied Industries Building and Shopper's Mart and eat some of her favorite foods such as cheese curds, a corn dog, chicken on a stick and the Cattlemen's Beef Headquarters. "The men in the family attend the tractor pulls every year which gives the women the day to do our 'shopping'. We also like to hit up a couple of free stage events, and Hairball is an annual concert that we attend."

Like Andrea, we know the Iowa State Fair is special to many people for many different reasons. We want to hear your "My State Fair" story. To share your story, visit our website at iowastatefair.org/shareyourstory. The deadline for submitting stories is July 24, 2015. Your story may be used by the Iowa State Fair for promotional purposes, but not without your written permission. Filming for the 2016 advertising campaign will take place during the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23.

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (06/30/2015)(readMedia)-- Due to a trademarking issue, the Rib Shack has renamed the Ultimate Bacon Explosion the Ultimate Bacon Brisket Bomb. We have updated all promotional materials for our 2015 New Foods and 2015 New Food Competition.

http://www.iowastatefair.org/media-center/news-releases/iowa-state-fair-new-foods/

DES MOINES, IA (06/30/2015)(readMedia)-- A stop in the Agriculture Building is a must do for most fairgoers and this year there will be some old favorites and new attractions. the world-famous Iowa State Fair Butter Cow will be featured alongside a sculpture celebrating the 80th anniversary of Monopoly, one of the world's most beloved family board games, at the 2015 Fair.

The classic fast-dealing property trading game was first commercially sold in the 1930s and has remained a popular game around the world. Monopoly is locally licensed in more than 103 countries and printed in more than 37 languages. In 2015, it will be sculpted entirely in butter by the talented Sarah Pratt and fairgoers can see their favorite Monopoly pieces come to life alongside Monopoly's iconic character, Rich Uncle Pennybags.

In addition to the two butter sculptures, It Takes An Iowan will debut nearby as an interactive exhibit focusing on Iowans as leaders in the ongoing effort of providing food for the nation and the world. Highlighting the advancement of technology to better produce food, as well as education and agriculture around the world, stop by It Takes An Iowan to learn how Iowans are leaders in areas such as agriculture, education, communication, legislation and much more.

Other great agriculture exhibits and demonstrations include giant pumpkins, jumbo fruits and vegetables, the Discovery Garden, daily stage presentations and more. All exhibits will be on display in the 111-year old John Deere Agriculture Building 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. daily during the Fair. Make sure to "Find A New Path" to the John Deere Agriculture Building's 40 degree cooler to see this year's butter sculptures and other great Agriculture exhibits during Fair Tour, August 13-23.

# # #

Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (06/24/2015)(readMedia)-- The Iowa State Fair is known for fun, interesting, and delicious food. Each year, a list of new culinary adventures from sweet to salty, to strange and yummy are announced. In 2015, the list of new foods is sure to keep everyone in the family looking for more.

The 2015 New Foods includes:

• Apple Pie On-a-Stick

• Bruschetta

• Cattleman's Steak Wrap

• Chocolate Dipped Strawberries on a Stick

• Corn in a Cup

• Deep Fried Cherry Pie

• Deep Fried Nacho Balls

• Donut Sundae

• Golden Fried Peanut Butter & Jelly on a Stick

• Gluten Free Corndog

• Kernel Kluster

• Pumpkin Spice Funnel Cake

• Toasted Coconut Caramel Cluster

• Ultimate Bacon Explosion

• 27° Super Chill Beer

• and of course, the newest Fair Square flavor, Chocolate Marshmallow Malt

Concessionaires offering new foods in 2015 submitted entries for the New Food Contest. The New Food Contest entries were judged on taste/flavor, presentation/appearance, value and creativity/originality.

"We have something for everyone at the Fair," said Gary Slater, CEO for the Iowa State Fair. "But, we love the challenge of finding the next new and exciting Fair food."

Fairgoers can sample the top three contenders and cast their vote between August 13- 17. The 2015 New Fair Food winner will be announced on August 18.

Corn in a Cup is a heaping portion of grilled Iowa Sweet Corn cut straight off the cob. The best of Iowa's corn crop is then mixed with pork chorizo, butter, chayote cheese, lime juice, sour cream, mayo, and "Magic Dust," The Corn Stand's (Ruan Plaza) secret spice. It is considered the caviar of Iowa.

The Toasted Coconut Caramel Cluster is a delicious combination of toasted coconut, caramel fudge, and bits of pretzel, then frozen on a stick and freshly dipped in chocolate when ordered. The perfect treat for an August day, this sweet and salty goodness will be available at the Dipped in Chocolate Stand on the outside of the Livestock Pavilion. This will bring back Girl Scout cookie memories with a 2015 twist.

The Ultimate Bacon Explosion features 8 oz. of fresh brisket trimmings infused with a light jalapeno cheese, blended with seasonings, and then wrapped in bacon. It is then smoked and lightly sauced in a homemade Sweet Chili BBQ Sauce. As if it couldn't get any better, this is 100% gluten-free and can be found at the Rib Shack in Walnut Square.

Additional entries in the contest included Deep Fried Nacho Balls, Cattlemen's Steak Wrap, and Apple Pie On-a-Stick.

"It is fun to see what new foods we can offer each year and even though there will be only one winner in the New Foods Contest this year, Fairgoers will be able to try all the new foods and pick their favorite," said Slater.

To find new foods and old favorites, look for the Iowa State Fair Food Finder coming soon to iowastatefair.org.

 

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (06/16/2015)(readMedia)-- Local Des Moines Artist Ben Schuh has been named the winner of the Iowa State Fair Mural Contest, and will be painting his creation in the Patty and Jim Cownie Cultural Center. Watch his mural come to life August 13-23.

According to Schuh, his concept for the mural was to combine the best of both naturally occurring and man-made points of interest in Iowa. Some of these points include the Capitol Building, Des Moines skyline, High Trestle Trail Bridge, wind turbines and Iowa's landscape. "These elements overlap in such a way that the entire mural interacts and draws viewers in," said Schuh.

Originally from Webster County, Schuh and his family are passionate State Fair attendees, starting with his grandfather back in the 1930's. He is a third generation 4-H participant. He participated throughout his childhood, and he exhibited 4-H projects at the Iowa State Fair in the late 90's.

"My upbringing was defined by 4-H.," Schuh said in his application. "As a third generation 4-H'er and a second generation State Fair exhibitor, it is part of my heritage."

Schuh's interest in art really developed in college. A passionate Iowan, he graduated from Grand View University in Des Moines with degrees in Fine Art and Graphic Design. While his largest client base is Des Moines and the Midwest, he has sold paintings all over the nation, as well as in Canada and Europe.

As the mural contest winner, Schuh won a $2,500 stipend, up to $500 in reimbursement for supplies, and an invitation to paint the mural on-site during the Fair.

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

DES MOINES, IA (06/03/2015)(readMedia)-- The Big Boar, Big Ram and Super Bull competitions at the Iowa State Fair are always a favorite, but 'Nothing Compares' to the bigger stakes in 2015. All Big Animal Contests have significantly increased premium prizes for the 2015 competitions

The Big Ram competition takes place on August 13 at noon in the Sheep Barn, while the Big Boar contest takes place at 1 p.m. the same day in the Swine barn. The lucky owners of the heaviest animals in each competition will take home a record $1,000 prize, up from $350 in 2014. Second place in each competition will also receive $500.

The Super Bull contest will be judged at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 13 in the Pioneer Livestock Pavilion sponsored by Prairie Meadows with the heaviest bull bringing home a record $1,750, up from $750 in 2014. Second and third place winners will also receive $650 and $400 prizes, respectively. Plus, an additional $1,000 will be paid to any Super Bull exhibitor who can break the 3,404 pound record set in 2009.

Big Animal Contest Entries are due August 1 and must be submitted by mail. Entrants are limited to one animal per exhibitor. For questions about the contests, contact the Iowa State Fair Competitive Events Department at 515-262-3111, ext. 207 or visit http://www.iowastatefair.org/competition/categories/.

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Frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa's greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. "Nothing Compares" to the 2015 Iowa State Fair, August 13-23, 2015. For more information, visit www.iowastatefair.org.

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