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In Festival Guide Commentary

The Wisconsin State Fair holds all kinds of treasures for you. Here are just a few things #WeWant while we are there! (PHOTO: Bobby Tanzilo)

#WeWant: State Fair edition

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The Wisconsin State Fair is one of the greatest things ever. Here are just a few of the things #WeWant while we are there!

Freeze it: The Slushy Wizard

I try to buy something weird each year at State Fair, and this time, it was the Slushy Wizard from the expo center. The pitchman didn't have to work too hard to get me to part with my $19.95 for two cups: basically, you just freeze the outside liner, then pour in your margarita mix, juice, soda, whatever … and in minutes, you have a slushy drink. No ice necessary. We'll see how this gizmo holds up over time. But in these dog days of summer, I hope to the Slushy Wizard of chilling out. – Andy Tarnoff

Drink it: Piña Colada

I love the Tropics at the Fair area but funnily enough I found this gem in the World Cafe area. Cool down with this freshly made mocktail. Honestly, the whole World Cafe area is worth exploring as that is also where I found my deep fried Kringle. Or, you could do what I did and take that Piña Colada back to the Tropics stage! – Carolynn Buser

Buy it: Hot tub

Even though publisher Andy Tarnoff makes a good point in this blog that buying a hot tub for $10,000 that you don't have the chance to try out first is probably a bad idea - I still want one. It's usually 90 degrees at the State Fair, and yet, the sight of the whirlpools remind me that winter is eminent and soaking in an outdoor steamy bath night after night would definitely take the sting out of the cold. However, if I did get a hot tub, I recognize I would really need to up my champagne consumption. – Molly Snyder

Eat it: Cracovia

Located next to the giant slide, Cracovia is what I most look forward to at the fair each year. I love, love, love the giant potato pancakes ($5), either with apple sauce or syrup (sometimes both!) and I like to mix it up by adding a side of Polish sausage for $2 or by getting a plate of meat pierogi ($5) with bacon and sour cream, of course. For a long time, Cracovia, which sold High Life at its outside taps, was the only place to get a good beer at the fair, though that's a situation in the past now thanks to the Micro, the Goose Island building and more. Go around the back and grab a table inside to enjoy Cracovia's crack polka (and oldies) band while you eat. Though it's stiflingly hot inside, eating pierogi and watching couples polka feels like a little bit of old Milwaukee heaven. Bobby Tanzilo

Attend it: Wisconsin State Fair

I haven't been to the fair this year yet and time is running out! Should I make it there, I'll seek out duck fajitas first, then the Wisconsin products room as a whole. Gotta stop at the Micro for a beer and swing by the craft displays to look at pies, jellies, and bonsai. A tour of the chickens and goats is good to inspire agrarian daydreams. Wash a couple of Mille's Italians down with a couple of High Lifes (High Lives?) while I get down to my favorite part: the wandering. I never know what I'll find until I do. On the way out, I'll lose a couple of bucks trying to win my girl a giant teddy bear. – Nick Barth


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