Navigating the Indiana State Fair

August has arrived. Do you know that means? It is time for the Indiana State Fair. I have the opportunity to live just down the street from the State Fair. That is exciting, because we going to spend lots of time checking out exhibits, looking at the animals and trying some of the delicious food. Make sure you grab some tickets and head over the fair grounds. The fair is going on from August 4th through the 20th. 

Each year the State Fair has a different theme. This year the theme is "The Wonderful World of Food." The tag line is "We grow it. We sell it. We cook it. We eat it." That is very true. Here in the midwest we do grow a lot of food and that is a unique thing to Indiana. Each day of the fair there is theme that is highlighting different types of food. 

  • August 4th - Deep Fried Food 
  • August 5th - Melon 
  • August 6th - Popcorn
  • August 7th - Salsa & Ketchup 
  • August 8th - Eggs
  • August 9th - Pork Burgers
  • August 10th - Funnel Cake
  • August 11th - Cheese 
  • August 12th - Beef BBQ
  • August 13th - Ice Cream
  • August 14th - Apples
  • August 15th - Mint
  • August 16th - Corn Dogs
  • August 17th - Food On A Stick
  • August 18th - Turkey Legs
  • August 19th - Pickles
  • August 20th - Honey 

I love this list, because it really does showcase lots of the food items that we make/grow in the state. Obviously not all of these food items are healthy, but some times it is fun to indulge in a special treat. What better place to have a treat than the State Fair. 

Another great reason to hit up the fair is for the chance to walk! It is a great way to get in some exercise. I know that might seen silly to be walking while sipping on your milkshake, but it can be a good way to move more. 

There is also a really neat display from New York about Food from Around the World. You have to check it out. It was really neat and so well done. There is so many fun things offered at the State Fair - the food, the rides, the animals and neat displays. 

Navigating the State Fair in a Healthy Way

If you live in Indiana you have probably heard that the State Fair is open and under way! I grew up in 4-H and the State Fair was always a huge deal in the summer time. Along with 4-H projects, exhibit halls, livestock shows, and the rides the fair has a ton of food. All of this food smells delicious as you walk around the fair and it is just tempting you to stop by a booth and purchase something delicious. 

If you are trying to be healthy and follow a healthy life style going to the fair and encountering all this tempting food may be overwhelming. Well I have some great tips to help you navigate the State Fair in a healthy way! 

1. Share your food. Go to the fair with a friend and suggest splitting he food you purchase. This means that you get to try some new foods and don't have to eat the entire meal yourself. 

2. Take a lap or maybe two. Walk around at the fair and explore all the livestock barns and exhibit halls. This can be a great form of exercise and can help you burn off a few calories along the way. 

3. Watch what you drink. Lots of sugary beverages contain quite a few calories. Make sure you drink plenty of water to help keep you hydrated and feeling satisfied. 

4. Set a limit. The fair is a great place to eat delicious food, but make sure that you set some limits for yourself. For example, you can have 1 ice cream cone, 1 fried food item and you will plan to drink water throughout the day. Setting expectations can help you feel food about your fair food choices. 

5. Keep your eye out for healthier alternatives. There are some healthy choices available  at the fair like roasted vegetable kabobs, grilled lean meat options, frozen yogurt or fresh fruit. 

Keep these healthful tips in mind as you head out to the State Fair! Enjoy the sights, sounds and smells as you participate in this fun summer tradition.