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Minnesota Agencies

Information on Minnesota State Agencies, Boards, Task Forces, and Commissions

Compiled by the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library

State Agricultural Society

Also known as:
State Fair Board
Minnesota State Agricultural Society
Active dates:1854, 1860-

Present an annual state fair, an exhibition to encourage agriculture, horticulture, stock breeding, manufacturing, and other industry. License and regulate activities at the state fair grounds (Minn. Stat. 37.17)

The society finances the annual production of the fair and is responsible for all capital work and maintenance of the fairgrounds, classified as state property. The fair's income comes from ticket sales, licensing of commercial exhibit space, the rental of fair facilities for non-fair events, and other areas.


The Minnesota State Agricultural Society was first organized in 1854 as the Minnesota [Territorial] Agricultural Society, an organization independent of the territorial government. In 1860, the legislature provided for the organization of agricultural societies (Laws 1860 c17), and the State Agricultural Society was apparently reorganized under this law. The society is now a public corporation operating under Minn. Stat. 37. The principal function of the society is the presentation of an annual state fair, an exhibition to encourage agriculture, horticulture, stock breeding, manufacturing, and other industry.

The State Agricultural Society is made up of delegates from each of the state's 87 county fairs, plus representatives of 43 statewide associations involved in agriculture, horticulture and education. The Society is a quasi-state agency charged exclusively with the production of the annual Minnesota State Fair and management of the historic 320-acre State Fairgrounds. The Society and State Fair are financially self-supporting and receives no public funding of any kind.


10-member board of managers consists of a president or at-large member; 2 vice presidents, representing Hennepin and Ramsey counties; and 7 members representing different geographical areas in Minnesota. Members are elected by the society at annual conventions at which there are 3 delegates from each county or county fair, plus 100 delegates representing statewide organizations such as implement dealers, dairy industry, livestock breed associations, etc.


Source: MHS agency history record; LRL vertical file M68-Agricultural Society

Note: The Legislative Reference Library may have additional reports on or by this group available through our catalog.
New Minnesota State Fair general manager feeling the weight of history, tradition. Star Tribune, 8/6/2023.
Longtime Minnesota State Fair deputy taking over for retiring CEO Jerry Hammer. Star Tribune, 2/28/2023.
News clippings and documents. Agencies Notebook Collection, 1970-1991.
Record last updated: 08/08/2022

All information on this group from the Library’s collection of agency notebooks has been digitized. These materials are incorporated into the “documents/articles” section of the record. Please contact a librarian with any questions. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.

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