August 15th, 2018, Minneapolis, Minnesota:
It’s the WORLD’S LARGEST fire prevention event and it takes place right here in Minnesota. Can you guess where?
Hint: It’s a Great Get-Together when over 110,000 people A DAY eat their way through a menu of downright bizarre foods, like fried Snickers bars and alligator on a stick. If you guessed the Minnesota State Fair, you deserve a pink cotton candy glow stick. (Best eaten at night, obviously.)
Friday, Aug. 24, marks the 20th annual “Governor’s Fire Prevention Day” at the Minnesota State Fair. Bring the kids, grandkids, and heck, even the grandparents to learn about fire-safe behavior, fire prevention, safe escape from a fire, and technological improvements in burn treatment and firefighting equipment.
You might get one-on-one time with State Fire Marshal Bruce West and Governor Mark Dayton himself!
Sure, Fire Prevention Day in an educational experience, but it’s also fun and action-packed—like everything else at the Fair. Events take place at Dan Patch Park, the DNR building, Baldwin Park, and Promo Place—which means you can get a taste of the fair’s famous food as you make your way to the events. New this year are turducken sausage, and a pepperoni and mozzarella stuffed waffle on, of course, a stick.

Over 900 Fire Prevention Day volunteers will help you learn how to prevent a fire, and how to respond appropriately should you find yourself in one. Events include:

  • FLAG RAISING – Held at Leinie’s Lodge, the daily flag raising at 10:15 a.m. will be conducted by the Minnesota Fallen Firefighter Memorial Association and the Minnesota Fire Service Pipe and Drum Team.
  • HOT ZONE EXPERIENCE – Learn about life-saving skills like CPR and AED. See animal rescue training. Use the Safe Escape House. Bounce around in the Safety Hopper. Watch a live kitchen fire demo. Check out the latest technology on firetrucks, tools, and training. Climb up on antique trucks and operate an old hand pumper.
  • DAN PATCH PARK – Fire Explorers, ages 14-20, will host the Dan Patch stage all day with many acts and skits. A highlight will be when Explorer posts from around Minnesota square off in a competition of difficult fire ground activities.
  • Motor Vehicle Collision – Fire Explorers will manage the scene of a motor vehicle collision and use the tools and techniques used by the pros to free victims, such as cutting away cars to access their patient and provide medical care. This is very cool to watch, so don’t miss it!
  • Minnesota Department of Natural Resources – With a definite stake in fire prevention, the DNR will use interactive games to help young and old understand how to prevent wildfires. Test your skills and knowledge for prizes, and visit the Fire Tower. Who knows, you may even spot our old friend Smokey Bear.

MINNESOTA fire prevention trivia

  • The odds say that one in five Minnesotans will experience a fire in their home at some point in their life.
  • More than two of every five home fires start in the kitchen.
  • The chances of dying in a fire are cut in half by a working smoke alarm.
  • Since 2012, the State Fire Marshal Division’s fire protection demonstration trailer has been used for 35 training classes to hundreds of the state’s firefighters. In July, 295 Minneapolis firefighters were trained using this trailer, the largest group of firefighters trained. The 18 training sessions took place over six days at the Minneapolis Emergency Training and Operations Center.
  • In 2017 and 2018, the average building and contents loss in Minnesota from sprinkler-save fires was $33,528. The average valuation of the building and contents in these fires was $5,994,544, a 99.4 percent save percentage. Here’s another way to look at it: Sprinkler-controlled fires sustain less than one percent of the damage to non-sprinklered buildings.


  • Over 3,000 people are hired as fair-time staff.
  • 300 concessions dish up nearly 500 different foods. (I’ve lost count of how many are on a stick.)
  • Each day of the fair, Sweet Martha’s Cookie Jar bakes three million cookies and the Corn Roast booth goes through 25,000 ears of corn.
  • The Minnesota State Fair is the #1 State Fair in the U.S. in many rankings, including USA Today, Foursquare, and Business Insider.
  • The Fair attracts nearly two million guests annually over 12 days. It’s second behind the Texas State Fair (2.25 million) in attendance. But, I point out that the Texas fair runs for 24 days.


Finally, in the true spirit of the Minnesota State Fair, you can get the Fire Prevention Day schedule and safety tips on a stick at any of the event locations.

Check the Governor’s Fire Prevention Day website for event times, locations, and more information.


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