Minnesota State Fair announces drive-thru event to get your fair food fix

The Minnesota State Fair may be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but you can still get your fair food fix this summer. 

Wednesday, the Minnesota State Fair announced it will host the first ever Minnesota State Fair Food Parade—a drive-thru experience featuring 16 State Fair food vendors, including Pronto Pups, Sweet Martha’s Cookie Jar, Fresh French Fries, Turkey to Go, Tom Thumb Donuts and Mouth Trap Cheese Curds. 

The Food Parade is not a curbside pickup situation like some State Fair food vendors have been doing lately at pop-ups around the metro. During the event, all vehicles will follow the same 1.5-mile route through the fairgrounds and pass by all 16 vendors.  

“It really is more of a parade than it is just a drive-thru," said Danielle Dullinger, Spokesperson for Minnesota State Fair. "We’re telling people to expect a multi-hour event. You’re going to be driving through the grounds, but it’s not just about the food... we’ll have entertainment, live performances, live music.” 

Guests are asked to remain in their vehicles during the event; all food service, including ordering, will take place at the vehicle window following health and safety protocols. 

“People in Minnesota just need a little bit of hope, you know? Hope that things are going to change and get better. And you know I think people are ready to get out of their houses too,” Stacey Pittroff-Barona from Giant Slide and Cheese on a Stick said. 

“We’re just happy that we can be involved in such a unique opportunity. This will be something that I know we’ll always remember,” Martha Rossini Olson owner of Sweet Martha’s Cookie Jar said. 

The Food Parade will take place over three weekends: Aug. 20-23, 27-30 and Sept. 3-7. 

Tickets will be sold per hour and must be purchased online in advance. 

Tickets are $20 per vehicle and do not include food purchases. The ticket is good for up to five people in the vehicle, not counting children under 4. If you have more than five people, a second $20 ticket will be required. 

Tickets go on sale Friday at 10 a.m.