What you need to know before heading to the Minnesota State Fair

What you need to know before heading to the Minnesota State Fair Photo: KSTP

Updated: August 22, 2019 09:35 AM

As the Great Minnesota Get-Together draws near, attendees may want to begin considering fair logistics. 

What rides to ride and what foods to eat may be top of mind for most fair attendees. 


But there may be more visitors want to think about, including, how to get to the fair, what they are allowed to bring and more.

Below is a guide to help you prep for your visit to the Minnesota State Fair: 

How to get to the fair: 

Metro Transit Express Bus Services:

During the fair, Metro Transit will offer State Fair Express Bus services. There are a total of 17 stops throughout that riders can catch a bus to get to the Great Minnesota Get-Together. Eight routes run daily during the fair from 9 a.m. to midnight. Nine of the routes are only available during the weekends and on Labor Day. Those routes run from 8 a.m. to midnight. The ride to the fair is $6. round trip. Learn more about the service here.

Free Park and Ride: 

For fairgoers who want to drive and not hassle with parking, the free park and ride option can help. The service allows fair attendees to park their vehicle for free and ride a bus to the fairgrounds. There are a total of 32 locations that offer park and ride services. Nineteen of the locations operate every day during the fair. Other locations offer staggered services. You can find locations and more information about the service here

KSTP at the Minnesota State Fair

Rideshare Apps:
Fairgoers looking to hail a ride to the fairgrounds have multiple options. Both Uber and Lyft have two designated drop-off and pick-up points at the fairgrounds. The two locations, sponsored by Lyft, are located at Gate 2 and Gate 16. You can find more information about rideshare options to the fair here.

Parking at the Fair:

Those looking to brave traffic and drive straight to the fair can find parking at a number of lots located adjacent to the state fairgrounds. Fair patrons can park from 6 a.m. to midnight at the fairgrounds for $15. Accessible parking is available for vehicles with a valid disabled persons parking placard. You can find more information about parking at the fair here.

Those who decide to take two wheels to the fair can park for free at three different lots. Bicycle parking can be located at Gate 6, Gate 2 and Gate 16. 

Plan your trip with the state fair app:

Those looking to plan ahead can do so through the Minnesota State Fair App, which is available through the Apple App Store or Google Play. The free app includes Fair Finder, which can help attendees find food and attractions. 

What's allowed at the fair:

Getting ready to pack for the fair? Here is what you are allowed to bring: 

  • Outside food and beverages
  • Backpacks, bags and coolers
  • Selfie sticks
  • Cameras

What's not allowed at the fair:

Below is a list of what patrons are not allowed to bring to the fair: 

  • Weapons
  • Fireworks
  • Alcoholic beverages 
  • Drones
  • Bikes, skateboards, skates and hover boards
  • Pets (with the exception of service dogs) 

First aid

Hopefully no one is injured during the State Fair, however, it is never a bad idea to know where to access first aid just in case. There are two stations that are sponsored by Regions Hospital. First Aid West is located on the south side of West Dan Patch Avenue across from the West End Market. It is open from 8 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. First Aid East is located outside the north end of the 4-H Buiding on Cosgrove Street. It is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. In the event of serious injuries, patrons are asked to call 911. 

Mobile phone charging stations 

Did you really go to the State Fair if you didn't Instagram it? For those whose phones run low on battery, there are plenty of charging stations found around the fair. A full list can be found here

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