It was the most unconventional Wisconsin State Fair we've ever seen (and ever wish to see), but the results in 2020 were very familiar: Wisconsinites ate a whole lot of food courtesy of the State Fair.
According to the summer tradition's newly reported numbers, the State Fair served 58,456 vehicles through its drive-thru and Curbside Cream Puffs program, which ran four weekends from July 23 through Aug. 16 in place of the cancelled fair.
In the end, those almost 60,000 vehicles feasted on 10,000 slices of dill pickle pizza, 16,000 Blue Ribbon brownies and 202,000 cream puffs during the four-weekend run. For comparison, the State Fair sold more than 400,000 cream puffs at last year's festival – almost twice as many as this year's social distanced rendition, but certainly far more than many may have expected after having to cancel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Talk about making lemonade out of lemons! (Speaking of which, the State Fair also sold 18,000 lemonades through the drive-thru.)
The State Fair also sold 1,200 cream puff face masks and more than 1,200 Wisconsin Products Pavilion boxes, delivered to fair fanatics as far away as Hawaii and Alaska.
"We are so proud to have created State Fair Necessities to give our loyal fairgoers a little piece of what we are so proud to showcase at the State Fair each year," said Kathleen O’Leary, CEO, Wisconsin State Fair Park, in a release. "Our success is attributed to the staff’s innovative thinking and ability to shift focus, as well as the thousands of people who created and shared with us on social media their ‘State Fair at Home,' came through the Fair Food Drive-Thru or purchased items through our new online 'One Stop Fair Shop.' Thanks to everyone who participated, and we look forward to being back in 2021 to celebrate together!"
As for next year, the 2021 Wisconsin State Fair will run Aug. 5-15. Here's to celebrating with a cream puff, a trip down the big slide and dancing to a local cover band together then.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.