Healthy Kick-off to Iowa State Fair

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DES MOINES, Iowa --Despite the misty morning weather, fair goers marched up the Grand Concourse to Expo Hill for the Iowa State Fair’s Opening Ceremony Thursday.

A crowd gathered around 8:15 a.m. to take part in the fair’s first 1K. Natalie Sullivan said, “We’re going to do this walk and go up to the opening ceremony, just get a lot of food today.”

The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs and the Healthiest State Initiative hosted the event. The point of the parade was to get people moving before indulging in fair food.

The walking tour also provided fun fair facts. "Actually keeping your mind active is another really healthy activity, and there are lots of ways to keep your mind active at the Iowa State Fair. You can always learn something new, try something different and maybe take home some of those hobbies,” said Liz Cox with the Healthiest State Initiative.

You can find out how many calories are in your fair favorites by downloading the Fair Food Finder app on your smartphone. Brochures are also available at the information booths and the Healthiest State Initiative’s space in the Varied Industries Building. The app also tells you how long it will take to burn off the calories in the food.

You can find out more about the Iowa State Fair’s historic sites by going to