Yep, we're back at it! As we walked through the gates we stopped for the traditional Poncho Dog. $3.00 each. It's definitely the Saturday crowd - only 210,000 people walked through the gates today. Everywhere you turned someone was there. Jacob was craving the Roasted Corn-on-the-Cob just $3 an ear, I said "Let's go for it!". Mmmmm it was worth the wait in line. We actually found a nice shady spot to sit and chow down. We picked up a large cup of 1919 Rootbeer for $4.00 along the way. The corn was perfectly roasted and dipped into a vat of melted butter. It's NOT served on a stick, they roast it with the husks still on. After we composted our cobs we moved on to the Grandstand Building. Inside are the usual various vendors. Located at their usual spots year after year. A seasoned fair attendee never needs a map. The Shopsmith, the Minnetonka Mocassins, Elle-pooh paper, The Jerky Shop, The Fudge Shop, The anti-abortion booth, Lake shore property for sale, The Post Office, Metrotransit, Light Rail, Massaging chairs, hammock chairs, dog tags, bamboo, dip sticks, NSP, cord-pro, Little Giant ladders, Harley Davidson, Le Paige lipstick, and so on. A new addition last year was Snyder's Drug Store. I think that was great because if you need an aspirin or antacid or bandage or even a Pearson's Nut Goodie your set! The building is so congested that you usually inch along with the crowds. It never fails your ankles will be the victim of a jogging stroller. Or the Gramma on the power scooter will need to stop and chat with her group of friends at the crossroads of several aisles. But you take it in jest and just listen to the man tell you how great the Vitamix machine really is. After being herded out the side door from the upper floor of the Grandstand you mosey down the long ramp and stop at the Star Tribune building for a few prepackaged wet wipes and your free ice cream scoop. We crossed over the grass to the stage to hear a nice pop band sing She's a Brick House and Ring of Fire. We chow down on Deep Fried Raviolis. Mine were cheese and jalapeno. Jacob's were beef. We shared. Both were good at $6.50 each. We got 8 pieces each with marinara sauce to dip. Now we were on to the Sky Ride. We had to pass Famous Dave's. That's where the new food - Chocolate Covered Bacon was sold. We were too full to try it. We were getting mixed reviews for it. One person said the chocolate was good but that they tasted BBQ sauce and thought it was nasty. However, we got to chat with the infamous Wally the Beer Man from the Twins Metrodome stadium! We waited in line to purchase the sky ride tickets. We opted for the round trip. $5 each. What a view of the fair! You do have the choice to stay on the ride and go completely round trip, or you can hang onto your tickets and board again later. We stayed put, we wanted to see that end of the fair and work our way around. So after our trek we disembarked and walked on to the Heritage Square. Strolling through the museum train and past all of the artifacts. Of course, we had to eat a Peter's Hot Dog. The Best deal at the fair only $1.50. Jacob's was plain, mine with onions. We strolled through the Printing Press museum. We walked past all of the stands and booths. The leather and pelts, sterling and turquiose jewelry, quilts from Rosebuds Cottage. Holly's Hobbies, KettleKorn, cast iron doorstops and banks, etc. Two years ago I carried a cast iron bunny around the fair with me -yikes! We checked out the AARP area and we both spun the wheel for a prize. We didn't win. We trekked past the cream puffs since we had one the first day, and we stopped for the Fresh French Fries. We shared the 32 ounce Best Buy bucket. They are the best thing at the fair! $4.75! We chowed down on them while watching the channel 5 6 pm news cast. After the news we each got a beach ball and Jacob received a water bottle. All of that salty goodness had us sooooo thirsty we needed an Arnie Palmer, just $3 each. A stop at Steichen's grocery store was in order. A dumpy little store tucked back by the poultry barns, probably there for the 4-H kids showing their animals. This brings us to the animals. Of course, the cows and llamas are a must-see. We worked our way to the Miracle of Birth Barn, then the River Raft Ride. We both decided we didn't want to walk around all wet, so we passed on that. We blew off the Bob Doer Snake Zoo. I know it's only a buck - but forget it, I don't need the nightmares. The Marines had a chin-up area and Jacob wanted to participate, but you had to be 15. They gave him a pencil instead. The Empire Commons are where the butter heads of the Princess Kay of the Milky Way and her runner-ups are carved. It is also where the ultimate Dairy Building Malt is purchased. An avid fair goer MUST have the "Dairy Building" malt. They are $4.50. The lines are astronomical, they put up ropes to keep people shuffling through in orderly fashion. I had the raspberry with hunks of fresh raspberries, Jacob had are you ready - vanilla. The Jeeps are across the street. We visited the Red Wrangler. That's on his list. There is another Fresh French Fries stand here. Also the pork chop on a stick is sold nearby. But, if you have been following our blogs, you know we don't need grilled pork chops here. That brings to the Haunted House. Jacob begged to go in. I didn't give in. I'm hoping that when we go back on Monday his cousins will go through with him instead. So we walked through the International Bazaar. A band was performing so we found a few seats and watched them for awhile. Which brings us to a Sensodyne tent. A "dental professional" would discuss tooth sensitivity with us for a free goody-bag and samples. I didn't tell them that I am a "dental professional" and got the goody-bag for Jacob. We wanted to walk through the Bailey House - the fairgrounds founder's and gardener's house, but we missed the deadline. We looked at the topiary garden and then boarded the Space Tower. What a view! The lights were just coming on so it was getting fun. After the ride, we stopped at the Leinie Lodge Band Shell and listened to the band Trampled By Turtles for a while. They were free! Unbelievable. But that wasn't enough for Jacob he wanted to see The Black Keyes and the Black Crowes. They were playing in the GrandStand. We started our way back to them by way of the Pronto Pup stand. He had to have a Papa Pup $5. It is a foot long Pronto Pup. We ate it in the air-conditioned natural gas building. That is also where you get your wooden yard stick. It makes for a great walking stick about this time. After the dog was consumed we moved on to the concert. The Black Keyes were already playing. After much discussion, he decided that he would rather just ride the Skyglider which rides along side of the venue and watch it and other people for a round trip. While on the Skyglider, he noticed that people were wearing necklaces with a blue flashing light on them, we had to track them down from the Chevy dealer. By the time we got there, they were closed. Bummer. We strolled through many more stands, and decided to head for home. We crossed the street and boarded our bus just at the right time. We got a nice cushy seat and the bus filled up fast - many squished into the aisles. We called Grampa to pick us up from the Park & Ride lot. It was a treat to see him sitting in the parking lot when we arrived. My feet appreciated his close proximity! Thanks Grampa! What a fun day! My grand total of food and drink consumption today was $54.75. The rides total was $26.00 Grand Total of Fun - Priceless. Actually, $80.75. Including our admission - pre-purchased tickets at $8 each - $96.75.