Minnesota State Fair for cheap: Freeloader bonus

Minnesota State Fair for cheap: Freeloader bonus
Image courtesy of the Minnesota State Fair

So, you paid the $8 to $11 entrance fee, and you saved money busing in rather than parking in a lot, but you're still worried about spending too much because you are on a fixed budget this year. No worries. There's plenty to do at the fair for little or no money. The following list is by no means complete, but we've compiled the top concerts, foods, prizes, and shopping that caught our eye. 

Minnesota State Fair for cheap: Freeloader bonus

Got a buck? You're in business. Here's a list of things that cost a dollar or less:

All you can drink milk (white or chocolate)
Location: N-29 Judson Avenue

Location: Caramel Apples/Sno-Cone, M-28 Clough Street

Yogurt, cheese sticks, all you can drink milk
Location: Dairy Town Diner, R-31 Dairy Building

Location: Flora's Dress Emporium, G-23 Heritage Square

Falafel on a stick, grape leaves on a stick
Location: Holy Land Deli, U-31 International Bazaar, south wall

Peacock feathers
Location: India Imports, V-31 International Bazaar

Shrimp cocktail
Location: Lemonade and Shrimp Cocktail, S-30 Judson Avenue

Apples, cider, cider freeze
Location: MN Apples, T-28 Ag-Hort Building, west wall

Vanilla ice cream, cone
Location: Rainbow Ice Cream, N-23 Grandstand, east wall next to stairs

Guitar picks
Location: Rock 'n' Roll Jewelry, N-23 Lower Grandstand


Minnesota State Fair for cheap: Freeloader bonus

No money for the Grandstand? Not a problem. The Leinie Lodge Bandshell, which is located near the main entrance, has several really great concerts scheduled for absolutely free:

Boys II Men
8:30 p.m. Thursday, August 26 through Friday, August 27.

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
8:30 p.m. Saturday, August 28 through Sunday, August 29.

Roseanne Cash

8:30 p.m. Monday, August 30 through Tuesday, August 31.

Trampled by Turtles
8:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 1 through Thursday, September 2.

The Family Stone
8:30 p.m. Friday, September 3 through Saturday, September 4.

The Lost Trailers

8:30 p.m., Sunday, September 5 through Monday, September 6.


Minnesota State Fair for cheap: Freeloader bonus

Feeling lucky? Enter into one of these contests and see if you can win something for nothing. There are tons of prize drawings, but here's what we found to be particularly sparkly on the list:

Prize: Silver iPod Nano
Booth: Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance
Location: X-21 at the Education Building, southwest corner

Prize: iPod Nano, riding lawn mower, gas garage heater
Booth: MN Blue Flame Gas Association
Location: O-25 Nelson Street

Prize: Apple iPad
Booth: MN School of Business
Location: X-21 at the Education Building, southeast corner

Prize: Twins bobble head
Booth: MN Twins
Location: U-30 Judson Avenue, between Underwood and Cooper Streets

Prize: iPod Touch
Booth: New Family Services
Location: O-23 Upper Grandstand, southeast wall

Prize: Two opening night tickets to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, two tickets to Angelique Kidjo
Booth: Ordway Center for the Performing Arts
Location: V-24 Merchandise Mart, north wall

Want to look through the entire list of happenings yourself? Check out the official fair guide, located here.

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