Minnesota State Fair breaks all-time attendance record

State Fair
Kali Geyer shows off a lamb that was born 24 hours earlier on Thursday, Aug. 21 at the Minnesota State Fair.
Jennifer Simonson/MPR News

More people attended the 12-day 2014 Minnesota State Fair this year than ever before, according to statistics released by the fair on Tuesday.

Total attendance came in at 1,824,830, topping the 2009 record of 1,790,497.

The fair got a boost from mild summer weather and what fair officials called some of the biggest changes to the fair in nearly a century, including $18 million in upgrades that built a new transit center and new West End Market area where the Teen Fair started in the mid 1960s.

Four sold-out grandstand shows, a relatively rare occurrence at the Fair, helped drive the record numbers, as did the debut of two highly-anticipated Minnesota Timberwolves basketball players and a Military Appreciation Day event, officials said.

Two daily attendance records were set, on Tuesday, Aug. 26 with 133,595 attendees, and on Saturday, Aug. 30, with 252,092 visitors -- the best-attended single day of all time. Labor Day attendance was 159,430.

The 2015 Minnesota State Fair opens Aug. 27.

Full MPR News coverage of the State Fair

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