Things that grow at the Iowa State Fair:

February 21, 2017
drewnorton's picture
Things that grow at the Iowa State Fair:
  • Award winning fruits and vegetables. The Iowa State Fair Food Department is the largest of any state fair in the country. 1,000-pound pumpkins – we’ve got them!
  • Animals. You can watch the animal birthing process, as well as the stages of growth and development in cattle, sheep and pigs all in the Animal Learning Center.
  • Horticulture. The Discovery Garden is truly a peaceful place for Fairgoers to sit and enjoy the flowers. You can see hundreds of varieties of plants and flowers on display.
  • Facial Hair. In Pioneer Hall, Fairgoers can watch or participate in the “Beard Growing Contest” featuring the Best Groomed, Longest Beard, Most Unique Beard Design, Most Historic Nature and Best Beard Design with Costume.
  • Your Food Palate. With 200 food stands and 70 specific items on-a-stick, you can easily become a foodie. Have you ever tired a Unicorn Lollipop, a wonder bar, or Tot-chos?

One of the Blue Ribbon Foundation’s goals is to grow and improve the Iowa State Fairgrounds so it remains a vibrant entity for years to come.  This goal can be achieved with your support.

Ruan Plaza, a greenspace bordering the east side of the William C. Knapp Varied Industries Building, made its Fair debut in 2015. A retaining wall between the Robert G. Horner and Sheri Avis Horner Service Center and the Plaza will now showcase “Growing Our Future”, a program designed to add an artful display to the grounds.

Seven different levels of giving are available, with each customized aluminum plaque working together to create the overall design. Distinguished by two different sized plaques, each level is recognized with colored “leaves”. The leaves allow for two lines of inscription and can become more personalized on the larger pieces.

The deadline to add your “Growing Our Future” leaf for the Iowa State Fair is March 31. To take advantage of this program, please use our secure online order form or download and print the Growing Our Future BrochureTo receive more information on this, or any of our fundraising efforts, please email me at