The Year of Popcorn at the Indiana State Fair starts popping in just two weeks and those attending won’t forget a special site put together by Indiana’s Family of Farmers. Andy Klotz is the public relations director at the fair.
“We have created the world’s largest popcorn ball, and that will be on display beginning August 3rd in the Ball State Ag Hort building,” he told HAT. “It will be there throughout the run of the fair and people can see what a 5,200 pound popcorn ball looks like. It is presented by the Indiana Family of Farmers and after we are done with it at the fair they are actually going to deconstruct it and use it as livestock feed. So it will not go to waste.”
Klotz says the “year of” theme for fairs the last 7 years helps educate visitors about Indiana commodities with a strong economic impact. Popcorn does qualify for that designation.
“We hope to if nothing else remind folks that Indiana is the country’s second largest producing state of popcorn and popcorn is a worldwide treat so it really does add to the economic impact for our state in particular.”
This fair will cause a pause in the coliseum renovation construction and fairgoers will be able to get a close look at the project.
“We will be offering tours of the coliseum 10-6 each day. People will be able to go through from one end to the other and see it for themselves, and of course the youth arena which is part of the whole $63 million project is done and is up and ready and looking great. It’s going to be dedicated on August 10th.
The new coliseum will be home to great live entertainment but again this year a stellar lineup has been put together for the free stage inside the fairgrounds.
The Marsh Free Stage concerts and events are free with paid admission to the fair and the most recent schedule is:
• Aug. 2: KARMIN (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 3: Coco Jones (noon and 2:30 p.m.), Matt Nathanson (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 4: Hispanic Music Day (10 a.m. to 8 p.m.)
• Aug. 5: Vertical Horizon followed by Blind Melon (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 6: “Happy Together Tour” with The Turtles featuring Flo & Eddie, Chuck Negron formerly of Three Dog Night, Gary Puckett, Mark Lindsay of Paul Revere & The Raiders and Gary Lewis & The Playboys (7 p.m.)
• Aug. 7: Parmalee and Rachel Farley presented by HANK-FM (7 p.m.)
• Aug. 8: Kevin Costner and Modern West (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 9: Theory of a Deadman (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 11: Contemporary Christian Music Day featuring Matthew West, For King and Country, Jason Castro, Love and the Outcome, Traders Point Worship Team (2 to 9 p.m.)
• Aug. 12: Styx (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 13: Joe Nichols presented by HANK-FM (7 p.m.)
• Aug. 14: “Sailing Rock Tour” featuring Christopher Cross, Orleans, Firefall, John Ford Coley, Robbie Dupree and Player (7 p.m.)
• Aug. 15: Montgomery Gentry (7:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 16: Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band with Jennie DeVoe (6:30 p.m.)
• Aug. 17: Blood, Sweat & Tears (7 p.m.)
• Aug. 18: Pepsi Gospel Music Day welcomes Joshua Rogers, BET Sunday Best 2012 season 5 winner (2 to 9 p.m.)
The Marsh Free Stage, a permanent stage in the northwest corner of the fairgrounds in Dow AgroSciences Celebration Park, can accommodate about 5,000 fans.
The Indiana State Fair also announced Thursday that they have created a free, new and improved Indiana State Fair app for iPhone and Android users.
Developed by local company LiveLink Mobile, the app offers everything a person needs to plan and enjoy a trip to the fair. Among its many features, it offers six interactive maps with different categories of destinations, including:
• Exhibits & Attractions
• Food Vendors
• Baby Feeding & Changing Stations
• Stroller/Wheelchair Rentals
• First Aid/Info
The colorful app also includes listings of every fair event for every day of the fair; a special separate listing of all the Marsh Free Stage concerts; general information on hours, admission and special discounts; a special parking map showing the most convenient places to park; and a sharing feature that allows users to post comments and photos to their Facebook friends and Twitter followers. It even allows users to purchase discount admission tickets with a few simple touches.
“The idea is to give our visitors all the information they need in the most convenient way possible,” Klotz said. “This new app will help people pre-plan their day at the fair and then help them find their way into and around the fair quite easily.”