Iowa State Fair

Join the 11-day celebration of all things Iowa.

The iconic Iowa State Fair is a celebration of the food, families and farming that make Iowa special. Whether it’s meeting baby piglets, cheering on grocery bagging competitions or enjoying an ice cream cone in the dairy barn, fairgoers can make lifelong memories during the incredible 11-day event.

Iowa State Fair Exhibit - 2019

As you make plans for this year’s Iowa State Fair, be sure the Iowa Food & Family Project (Iowa FFP) display is at the top of your “must do” list! Join us in the Southeast Atrium of the William C. Knapp Varied Industries Building from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily to see why farming is Iowa’s masterpiece.

You’ll have the chance to pick up a paint brush and leave your mark on a mural comprised of 23,000 paint-by-number spaces! The mural showcases the creativity and collaboration of farming in Iowa and will be brought into full color using soy-based paint.

In addition to the interactive mural, you can put a frame around farming courtesy of a farm-and food-themed photo booth and take-home coloring sheets. There will also be opportunities to win five incredible pieces of agriculture-inspired artwork from a local photographer and artists! Learn more about this year’s display here.

Iowa State Fair Exhibit - 2018

In 2018, we mixed things up with an entirely new display that offers fairgoers a unique perspective about agriculture, farm families, food and food retailers. An estimated 40,000 fairgoers stopped at our booth to "Follow a Farmer," play trivia or win a grocery bag. Learn more about our 2018 display here.

Iowa State "Fare" Cookbook

You can continue enjoying fair food all year long with recipes from Iowa Food & Family Project’s Iowa State “Fare” Cookbook. The cookbook serves up tried and true recipes created by Cristen Clark, a farmer, award winning-cook and fair aficionado. Click here to download a copy of the cookbook.

By The Numbers

It takes a lot of volunteers, food and fuel to power the Iowa State Fair each year, and Iowa’s farm groups play a huge part in making that happen. Here are a few fun facts about food at the Iowa State Fair: 

  • Approximately 160,000 eggs on a stick are handed out each year.

  • The Iowa Cattlemen's Beef Quarters serves 28,000 pounds of beef each year.

  • On average, more than 7,100 gallons of ice cream are served at the Dairy Barn.

  • Each year, 75,000 pork chops are served.

  • Beer and hot dogs are state fair favorites that come from corn.

  • The turkey grill opened in 1983.

  • The fair spans 400 acres, and a farmer can grow 94,000 bushels of corn or 26,000 bushels of soybeans on 400 acres.

  • A world record for the most people simultaneously eating corn dogs was set at the fair, with 8,400 corn dogs consumed.

View an infographic with these fair food facts.

Kelly Visser