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Press Room

2016 Press Room


U.P. State Fair Authority Receives U.P. Non-Profit of the Year Award

2015 Press Room

2015 Fair Breaks Attendance Records

MDARD's State Veterinarian Stops Bird Movement to Protect Health of Michigan Poultry

2014 Press Room


Michigan Center for Truck Safety Showcase

John Martinez Studios

Mitchell Marionettes Showboat Spectacular

The Wallendas' Circus Incredible

Martinez Studio Art Club Children's Workshops


Previous Years Press Room

April 25, 2013 - Daily Press - 2013 U.P. State Fair Entertainment Lineup

April 26, 2013 - Daily Press - Fair to offer old favorites, new attractions

Lunch with Governor Snyder Planned for Wednesday, August 14

Ladies Day New and Improved

Jr. Market Livestock Auction Scheduled

Native American Awareness and Wellness Fair Activities

2012 Wrap Up Article - Daily Press

The organizers of the UP State Fair are quick to recognize that good things come in threes, especially this year. The summer of 2012 marks the fair’s third anniversary under regional management, and the number three theme runs throughout this year’s event. In the area of retail and food vendors, new layouts, new and expanded vendor offerings and the return of old favorites are the three big stories that add up to more great options for fairgoers looking to pick up great deals and fill up on signature fair food.

The first change can be seen in the Ruth Butler Exhibition building where a new space layout means more vendors for fairgoers browsing, shopping and munching their way through. Visitors can expect to find old favorites, like Portraits by Mary Ann featuring hand-drawn likenesses,  Sayklly’s and Old World Roasted Almonds, and some new, like Bald Eagle Harley-Davidson of Marquette, Simple Luxuries hand-blown glassworks, Buck’s Sports featuring snowmobile and motorcycle apparel and DOZ Toy with remote controlled toys for the entire family including helicopters, airplanes, robots and more.

Besides inside the Exhibition Building, additional vendor space can be found at the other end of the midway, leading towards the new Miracle of Life Educational Pavilion-sponsored by GreenStone Farm Credit Services  and Michigan Farm Bureau. In previous years, food and goods vendors stopped at the end of the midway.  Now, vendors will extend down past the Miracle of Life Educational Pavilion giving food and shopping options away from the crowds of the midway. With all the family-centered activity around the new Educational Pavilion, these expanded options are sure to be a favorite place to refuel between fun, hands-on edutainment options.

The fair, for many, means a break from diets to indulge in some fun food options. While fan favorites like Norm’s French Fries and Croatian Chicken will be back and as good as ever, this year welcomes some brand new options, several UP native, to cure those fair food cravings. DeBacker’s Family Dairy from Daggett, Michigan will feature their family creamline dairy ice cream and treats.  Vollwerth’s Sausages from Hancock will locate on the midway with their signature sizzling sausages and hot dogs. From Manistique, the All-American will showcase their breakfast options, wraps and over-the-top desserts with an American theme. Other first-time food offerings include the Red Chili Pepper Café, specializing in Mexican-American fare and offering the ‘Macho Nacho’, a full bucket of nachos with fixings big enough for the family to share and the Donut Diner II, opening a second location by the horse barns for a convenient place to get that sweet tooth fix while exploring all the corners of the fair. Finally, for those exploring the Antique Gas and Steam Village, they’ve added an old-time ice cream parlor serving up cold treats and fountain drinks with an old-fashioned flair.

With the additional options and new faces, guests will find more to explore, browse and taste throughout the fairgrounds for 2012. This year’s U.P. State Fair—the year of the ‘Three for All’-- opens on Monday, August 13th at 5 PM and runs through Sunday, August 19th. For more information, please visit www.upstatefair.org.

2010 Fair Wrap Up News Release
The carnival lights and the beckoning smells of fair food have faded away, but memories from the 2010 U.P. State Fair will remain always fresh for many in the area. This year, with a starting budget of zero dollars and high hopes, was the first for the fair to be locally owned and operated.   As the U.P. State Fair Authority heard today at their first meeting since the fair ended just a month ago, it was also record-breaking.

The U.P. State Fair Board Authority took control of the fair last October 1 and wasted no time in delving into planning and booking entertainment for the week. The goal of putting more value for the admission price was in the front of organizers’ minds as they tried to find midway and grandstand acts with great appeal while staying within budgets. 
Budget became the word of the year around the fairgrounds as officials halved the state’s budget from the year before. No one doubted that cost-saving measures would be easily found, and these helped to keep the total cost of this year’s fairgrounds operation at just under $800,000. Those working closely with the numbers have great pride in keeping expenses below the proposed $910,000. 
With budgets cut, and maximum entertainment for all fairgoers a goal, sponsors and volunteers helped to fill in the gaps. Sponsorship totals for the year came to over $90,000. Vickie Micheau, Executive Director of the Delta County Commerce Center, managing agency for the fairgrounds, praised the volunteer and community efforts, saying, “The community really supported our vision of a U.P.-owned and operated State Fair. We could not let this facility and the fair go; it was just too important. Everyone really took ownership and helped us accomplish this record-breaking year.”
The importance to the community could not be overstated—this facility brings in year-round events, and the goal for the fairgrounds is to be self-sustaining from events and fair revenues. During fair week, 58,000 guests paid admission and walked through the gates to take part in the fair. Paid gate attendance was up by 18% over 2009. The attendance figure does not include vendors, employees, sponsors, media, or volunteer admission.
Just how much economic development comes from fair week?   Payroll for fair staff including groundskeepers, office workers, and others integral to its operation was just over $55,000 which goes back into the local economy.   Premiums paid out to livestock, produce and all other exhibitors totaled more than $43,000. Auction proceeds were close to $400,000. Couple these numbers with visitors who stayed in the local hotels, ate at local restaurants when not at the fair, bought gas and other souvenirs as well as picking up sundries that may have been forgotten at home, and there’s no doubt that the U.P. State Fair has a huge positive impact on our local way of life.
Jim Gale, Chair of the U.P. State Fair Authority commented during the meeting that, “All of these numbers mean nothing if the fair doesn’t mean something personally to those who attend. Because of the U.P. State Fair, young livestock exhibitors had the experience of raising an animal, caring for it, being honored for their accomplishments and then seeing a financial reward and possibly using the premium or auction income to help pay college tuition.”  
The lessons learned and friendships made in programs like these become invaluable. The idea of the community coming together in support of the U.P. State Fair in spite of its being cut from the state budget has forged further connections and relationships between many organizations and people that might not have met without it.   The joy of watching a child learn about forestry or watch a chick hatch or try a new food or dance to a new song , these are the stories behind the numbers that drove so many to stand behind this event. As a place for families to enjoy, for youth to learn and succeed, for entrepreneurs to take on as an opportunity and for all to experience, the 2010 U.P. State Fair succeeded wildly. As planning begins for the 2011 year, the U.P. is again saying, ‘Bring it on!’



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