Making Progress

October 7, 2019
drewnorton's picture

During the 2019 Iowa State Fair, professional artists created a huge sand sculpture at the entrance of the Sandra Freeman Dowie Midway Plaza. The duo would work each day carving out the design, little by little until the entire project was complete. Seeing photos of the progress reminded me of taking photos as projects take place on the Fairgrounds.


The Blue Ribbon Foundation started in 1993 with the goal of raising $6 million in two years and $30 million in ten years. The entire state of Iowa stepped up to support the preservation of the historic Fairgrounds. This first goal was reached and surpassed! In 20 years, over $100 million was raised. To date, that total is $160 million.

The first project the Blue Ribbon Foundation supported was the creation of the Service Center. This first project showed Fairgoers that the Foundation would always do more than what was expected. 


Fast forward to present day. The 4-H Building renovation is underway. Six weeks into the project and changes are happening quickly. Some local Fair-lovers might drive around the Fairgrounds throughout the year to check on the development while others will see the finished product in August. We will keep you updated on the progress. 


The Blue Ribbon Foundation will continue to make progress in our goal of preserving and improving the Iowa State Fairgrounds. We invite you to join us. Donate today and know that your dollars are enhancing the grounds and buildings that make up the 445 acres of beloved agricultural heritage put on full display every August.