2022 Iowa State Fair Recap: August 17, 18, 19

October 4, 2022
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Days 7, 8 and 9 of the Iowa State Fair seem like a blur! It’s over the halfway point, and the Blue Ribbon Foundation is ready to finish with a busy weekend. Each day is something new and exciting. Although the Foundation staff have been enjoying the Iowa State Fair for several days, it’s always someone’s first visit and we want to make sure it’s just as special as those who have attended every day.

The three Iowan of the Day winners:

Kathy Jo Porter – Waterloo: Passion is what drives Kathy Jo to work endless hours. In 2015, Kathy Jo launched Kaden’s Kloset and has worked tirelessly to help care for children in foster care or adoptive situations by providing them with essential items. She serves an average of 400+ children every year. Recently, Kathy Jo launched the Kaden’s Kloset Christmas Wonderland where each child in the Waterloo foster care system receives clothing and a few special gifts for the holiday. 

Bonnie Wood – Pocahontas: Bonnie has devoted her time to community projects and organizations including the Pocahontas Chamber of Commerce, Pocahontas Women’s Club, volunteering at the Rialto Theatre and leading Main Street Stitchers. Bonnie saw an opportunity for enhancements to her community through the Elbert Park Improvement project, adding a new playground and trail to the town. Through her work, she has been described as a “catalyst volunteer” because of her positivity, organization and passion for the Pocahontas community.

Amy Ryan - Forest City: Amy has volunteered as a Race Director for the Tunnel to Towers Foundation coordinating 5K remembrance runs for firefighters and veterans. She has helped raise $75,000 for the Foundation. Amy also puts together care packages for the military, every year. She brought Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to Forest City and now every child in town receives a free book to read each month. Amy volunteers using the app “Be My Eyes”, allowing her to video chat and provide visual assistance to blind and low vision people in her community.

Playing BINGO on the Grand Concourse is one of our favorite activities for the Wednesday of the Fair. This year, 4,000 Fairgoers played 81 games of BINGO raising $4,054! This is a record in the 4th year the Foundation has hosted the fundraiser. 

On Thursday, the Blue Ribbon Foundation welcomed Iowa Legislators to the Fairgrounds. Approximately 175 legislators and their families enjoyed the Iowa State Fair. The Foundation utilized the new Alliant Energy Landing. Just another example of the brand new space being used for special events.  

The Maytag Family Theatres received some upgrades this summer and is home to the new Kitchen. The Kitchen demonstration area showcased 5 sessions each day to full crowds. Sessions included wine mixology, cooking with honey, how to construct a wedding cake, hot chocolate bombs and even a play dough/slime demonstration. 

Did you happen to see this lovely young woman running between the Iowa of the Day presentation, stocking the merchandise booths, organizing the chainsaw woodcarvings or maybe eating plenty of Barksdale’s Chocolate Chip cookies? This would be our Public Relations Summer Intern, Brooklin Border. Not just for 11 days, but all summer long -she worked hard to support our mission. Brooklin took ownership of her specific projects and did an amazing job representing the Blue Ribbon Foundation. Thank you. 

Laura, Kenna and Brooklin will be a tough group of interns to replace next summer. If you know of a college student that might be interested in the Blue Ribbon Foundation's internship program, have them apply. The deadline is November 30. 

Stay tuned for more 2022 Iowa State Fair highlights.