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The Minnesota State Fair starts tomorrow, are you ready to reuse?

2023-08-23 8:00 AM | Reuse Minnesota (Administrator)

Reuse and the Minnesota State Fair might not seem like topics that go hand in hand, but with a little planning, anyone attending the Great Minnesota Get Together can help reduce the amount of stuff that ends up discarded. 

Along with the sunscreen and comfy walking shoes, be sure to add these items to your packing list:

  • Reusable water bottle. This is one of the easiest ways to cut waste, as many of us already have one, and there are several water bottle refill stations throughout the fair that are noted on the map.
  • Set of reusable utensils (or get one set of plastic utensils early in the day and reuse them for everything). No fancy sets are needed. Just grab a fork and spoon from your home utensil drawer and you are good to go. 
  • Reusable straw. With all the beverages available, straws can add up quickly. Bring along a straw made of metal, bamboo, or silicone, and quench your thirst waste-free all day long!
  • Cloth napkin. Cloth napkins hold up better than the inexpensive paper ones anyway. If you don't have one, a kitchen towel or even a section of old t-shirt will do. Of course, we can't guarantee that one will get you through the day, so you may want to pack a few extras if you have room.

In addition to what you pack, it is also useful to think about items you might pick up at the fair and bring home, especially the freebies. We know these are seen as important marketing tools for businesses, but they are often items that are redundant to what we already have (looking at you reusable water bottles) or are things that will quickly end up discarded, such as keychains or squishy earth-shaped balls. Often we don't realize until an item is already in our hands and we are walking away that we've picked up something we don't want. If you give some thought to this ahead of time, it is an easy way to make sure you only take home items you want and will use. Similarly, if you have a smartphone, instead of picking up flyers or business cards, consider snapping a picture or scanning a QR code

And a final tip, be sure to stop by the Eco Experience building in the northeast corner of the fairgrounds and find your way back to the reuse and repair table (look for the big moose)! Reuse Minnesota staff and board members will be there on the first two days of the fair doing reuse trivia with our "new" spin wheel custom made from scrap and reclaimed wood! Many of our member organizations will be there the rest of the days. Several will have prize drawings for gift certificates to shop used, memberships, or classes. Check out the schedule here.

See you at the fair!

Reuse Minnesota was founded in 2012 and is a member-based nonprofit that supports repair, resale, and rental businesses, bringing visibility to the reuse sector as a means to lower our state's impact on the environment.

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