New features at the Minnesota State Fair are typically food or ride related, but this year the Minnesota chapter of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) is adding religious understanding to the list.
Prompted the recent national debate over a planed community center/mosque in Lower Manhattan and the divisive debate about Islam, the group has been handing out flyers at the fair entitled: "Islam Explained."
ICNA members have also set up a website and have an ad on WCCO radio throughout the run of the fair that invites people to call a toll free number, talk to a Muslim and ask questions.
In 1987 tensions were high around a different topic: AIDS. Discovered in the early 80's, the virus was still greatly misunderstood. Linked copy The Minnesota AIDS Project set up an information booth at the fair that year to answer questions about the virus.