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Goldy Gopher

Visit the University of Minnesota's state fair Web site for a complete list of the many programs and activities the University is offering at the "Great Minnesota Get Together."

U sets up shop at the Minnesota State Fair

By Pauline Oo

Published on August 24, 2005

Since 1999, the University of Minnesota has been a permanent fixture on the grounds of the "Great Minnesota Get-Together." University professors and students, with expertise ranging from bullfrogs and lions to prostate cancer and sustainable energy, host educational talks and engaging demonstrations. University athletes offer exercise tips and insights into the world of competitive sports. And the University of Minnesota Marching Band entertains with school songs and Broadway tunes.

The Minnesota State Fair is one of the many ways the U works to keep Minnesotans abreast of what's going on at their state's only public research university. Last year, more than 1.6 million people visited the fair--one of the largest state fairs in the United States.

This year, the University is dishing up heaps more entertainment during the 12 days of the Minnesota State Fair--Thursday, August 25, to Monday, September 5.

Stage acts

The U of M stage will be abuzz with activity from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, and Radio K will broadcast live from 4 to 6 p.m. Here's a random selection of stage acts; for the full schedule, see U of M State Fair Calendar.

Thursday, Aug. 25, noon
Can plants and insects help us solve crimes? The answer is yes, and Jennifer Menken from the Bell Museum of Natural History will tell you how.

Saturday, Aug. 27, noon
The F. Scott Fitzgerald Writing Academy, a public charter school that's part of the Humphrey Institute's Center for School Change, is hosting a poetry slam.

Wednesday, Aug. 31, noon
With dinosaur bones excavated from the Bighorn Basin in Wyoming, geological sciences assistant professor Tim Demko and his students from the Duluth campus will demonstrate what it takes to prepare ancient bones for museum exhibition.

Monday, Sept. 5, 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m.
Morris campus jazz combo Funky Gumbo will entertain with its unique brand of music.

There'll be hundreds of experts in the University of Minnesota Building on Dan Patch Avenue; longer hours and more acts on the U of M stage adjacent to the building; the new Gopher's Guide to the Minnesota State Fair, which highlights all locations where the U is represented on the fairgrounds; greater representation from the University's campuses in Crookston, Duluth, Morris, and Rochester; and unique daily giveaways (including "brains-on-a-stick," brain-shaped pencil erasers to be given away on September 4).

Hide from the sun

If you're looking for a shady place to relax, head to Carousel Park, located on the southeast corner of the Grandstand. Students from the U's School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture have designed an innovative shading and sitting structure. It will be officially donated to the State Fair at 9 a.m. on opening day August 25.

In keeping with tradition, the University will once again host Maroon and Gold Day at the State Fair on Sunday, August 28. Highlights will include the Know Your U Trivia Contest, the Maroon and Gold Day Parade, demonstrations on how to make batteries from bacteria, and presentations on what it takes to build and drive a solar car--Borealis III, the U's solar car that took second place at the recent North American Solar Challenge, will be on display in the U of M building.

For a complete schedule of U-related activities and exhibits at the Minnesota State Fair, see U at the State Fair. Once you're at the Web site, you can also buy $7 discounted admission tickets (the regular price is $9 for adults) and download a copy of the handy Gopher's Guide to the Minnesota State Fair.

Other state fair stories

Of blowflies and blown alibis U at the Great Minnesota Get-Together Maroon-and-Gold-on-a-stick Day Help for Hot Flashes

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