KSTP-TV catches up with owners of long-running stands at International Bazaar
The International Bazaar offers Minnesota State Fair attendees an opportunity to experience the food and decor of cultures from all over the world.
This year, the owners of some long-standing vendors such as Okongo Enterprises, the French Nugget Company, El Burrito Mercado and Irish on Grand spoke with KSTP-TV about their stands and products.
Kofi Danso, who runs Okongo Enterprises in the southeast section of the bazaar, said he and his family have been selling their tie-dye clothing and flowy skirts at the fair for 25 years. Danso and his family drive from St. Cloud every summer to be vendors at three big events: The Wisconsin State Fair, the North Dakota State Fair and the Minnesota State Fair. The rest of the year, they work in trucking.
For the last six years, the French Nugget Company has sat in the back east wall of the International Bazaar selling a variety of lavender products, including essential oil, lavender satchels, linen mist, and natural diffusers. France native Fred Golchin said the lavender is sourced from a clean, collective farm in France that he and several others use for their products.
After approaching the booth, Golchin will offer you a spritz of lavender spray and tell you all about his natural lavender products.
Another consistent booth at the fair is El Burrito Mercado, which sells numerous Latin American goods. From beaded pouches to colorful Talavera to hand-painted coffee mugs, El Burrito Mercado has spent seven years selling merchandise at their spot in the west center section of the International Bazaar.
The longest-standing vendor at the International Bazaar and one of the few vendors celebrating Irish heritage is Irish on Grand, in the northwest section of the International Bazaar.
Liam, the owner, said Irish on Grand has been in their spot at the fair since 1993. That was the year the fair decided to revamp the International Bazaar, but Liam says they were a vendor at the fair long before renovations.
Irish on Grand specializes in Irish and Celtic jewelry, glassware, wall hangings, keychains, fragrances and more.
The International Bazaar is located on Judson Avenue, across from the Agriculture Horticulture building. They are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day.