Spirit of Giving

November 25, 2019
drewnorton's picture

Last week the Iowa State Fair shared a special announcement. Joe Barksdale gifted the chocolate chip cookie business to the people of Iowa by entrusting the business to the Iowa State Fair. Barksdale’s cookies are a staple at the Iowa State Fair. Each year, thousands of families get in line to get their cup or bucket of warm, fresh chocolate chip cookies. Now that cookie tradition will continue for future generations to enjoy.

The Barksdale family has been doing business on the Fairgrounds since 1976 and baking cookies since 1993. They are no strangers to supporting the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation. Barksdale’s Concession first gave a donation to the Foundation in 1993 and they have participated in the Corndog Kickoff since 2002.

The Barksdale family was featured in the 2007 Foundation Newsletter Donor Profile. Joe said it best: “My favorite thing about the Iowa State Fair is the Fairgrounds itself.  It really is a park with all the trees and turn of the century buildings. There is no other Fairgrounds like it in the country.”

Thank you Barksdale’s for being one of the first Foundation donors and continuing to support the Foundation’s mission to renovate and improve the Iowa State Fairgrounds.

This gift and the upcoming holiday got me thinking. Starting with Thanksgivings through the end of the year, the “Spirit of Giving” is everywhere. The feeling of wanting to help people and give back can be felt around every corner. That feeling of being thankful and celebrating the year’s blessings is contagious. The Blue Ribbon Foundation is so thankful for our supporters.

Thank you to our donors.  From large to small, all donations are important to the Foundation. Donors have a reason for giving to the Blue Ribbon Foundation that is unique and special to them. We are honored that they choose to support our mission.

Thank you to the volunteers that give countless hours of their time to our organization throughout the entire year. Our volunteers are always willing to tackle any project with a smile on their face. These volunteers keep coming back year after year and we are continually thankful for each of them.

Thank you to the interns that join our staff each summer. These college students go above and beyond to help accomplish our goals. Their hard work does not go unnoticed and they are each deserving of a huge thank you!

Thank you to the other Blue Ribbon Foundation staff members and the entire State Fair staff for stepping up and assisting with whatever is needed to make our organization run smoothly.

In the spirit of giving, the Blue Ribbon Foundation says THANK YOU for giving to our organization this holiday season and supporting our work every day of the year.


Cheers to Barksdale's Concessions and years of yummy cookies at the Corndog Kickoff: