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Old 12-29-2015, 04:33 PM   #1
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North Dakota State Fair

I am in the midst of planning our four week summer trip. We have decided the destination will be the Glacier National Park. From reviewing the many posts on the forum I have a idea what I need to do at GNP now I am planning the route and some other places to stop at. We haven't been to North Dakota and Michigan so I am planning to head up Michigan to the upper peninsula and head across the top of the US to GNP and then back to NJ. After seeing so much on TV about State Fairs I would like to include stopping at one on the trip. During our travel dates stopping at the North Dakota State Fair in Minot would fit in our plans. Has anyone been there or has any recommendations concerning the NDSF? alternately toward the end of our trip time Iowa is holding their State Fair in Des Moines would changing the trip to include Iowa be a better choice. Due to other stops this year I would only like to stop at one fair. Either one it would be for three or four nights. Thank you in advance for your thoughts, opinions and ideas.
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Old 12-30-2015, 11:37 PM   #2
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The Iowa SF has 3 times the attendance of the ND SF. I've been to Ohio and Indiana's fairs, they are truly fun and educational. If I was picking one, I'd think Iowa's would be more of an iconic midwestern state fair, it's much bigger in every way. For whatever you decide, get reservations early as possible, I've driven through Iowa during the fair and Des Moines gets quite booked for the fair dates.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Dakota_State_Fair
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iowa_State_Fair

Glacier is quite a beautiful park. In an RV you can visit the east side or the west side, but you won't be able to take it on the Going to the Sun road across the park. Be sure to do the road in your toad and get to the Logan Pass Visitors Center early, parking lots fill up and you get waved on by. The east entrance at St. Mary is not real developed or scenic. A couple of gas stations and a supermarket make up the town (Pop. ~50) From the west side you have Kalispell, Lake McDonald Lodge and lake, West Glacier, Columbia Falls. Flathead Lake and Wild Horse Island were places we enjoyed exploring. I'd drive the RV to the west side for more options of places to visit and do the in the park driving in the toad. Many trails to hike, water falls, and scenic vistas, along with quiet spots along the trails. Like all National Parks, the vast majority of the visitors never venture out of sight of their cars. If you hike a bit, suddenly the park is yours to enjoy. Having spent over 20 years teaching and touring around Yellowstone and Grand Teton, Glacier was the place I felt it important to carry bear spray. I'd not hike without it in Glacier, and even Yellowstone in the past 10 years has had an increase in bear population.
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Old 12-30-2015, 11:48 PM   #3
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Not sure what your travel dates are but I would urge you to check out the Minnesota State Fair. It runs for 10 days ending on Labor Day every year. August 25 thru September 5, 2016. Here's a link to the web site:

Minnesota State Fair
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Old 12-31-2015, 07:16 PM   #4
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The Iowa state fair is truly an experience! Lots of fun rides, displays, big music shows, animal shows (carriage horses, miniature horses, etc), and incredible food. There are church and community groups that have provided food for years, and they have it down to a science. The pork and beef producers always have big food concessions where we usually eat lunch. There are lots of small vendors too who can provide you with your wildest dreams in fried food - anyone for a fried Twinkie? (Sounds horrid to me too!)
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Old 02-02-2016, 07:20 PM   #5
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Robmat - We did the Northern Michigan route last August in our coach. There are 2 really terrific and luxury RV resorts in Traverse City & Petoskey. Liked them & the area so much we will spend another week there on our return from out west this summer.

In addition, in the UP we stayed at Straits State Park in St. Ignace, which is near and has great views of the Mackinac Bridge.

We too like the State Fairs. Went to Wisconsin's last summer, but our route this summer won't sync up with the dates. I bet either ND or Iowa are great fairs.

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