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Last day at the fair bids scorching goodbye

The fair is filled with irony like drinking hot drinks to fight the heat and riding rides that scare you. It also involves attending no matter how uncomfortable.

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. — The Great Minnesota Get-Together lives in a specific duality.

A day at the fair might involve eating hot cheese curds and chasing it with ice-cold root beer, or maybe hot cookies chased with cold milk — a hot treat, followed by a cool drink — but even the hot tubs have a price freeze at the fairgrounds right now. 

However, if you're at the Anchor Coffee House, some folks are still seeking hot drinks despite the temperatures.

"Our specialty is the mini donut latte," a server said. "[Customers have] ordered that hot and also just the plain drip coffee, they've gotten that."

And right as she finished her sentence, a man ordered an espresso. 

"It's better for your body; regulates hot fluid on a hot day," he said. "...I don't know if I just might be making this up," he followed up. 

Another man got a hot drip coffee.

"It's never too hot for coffee!" he shouted, as his kid followed with, "He's cold-blooded."

Turns out the State Fair is filled with irony like drinking hot drinks to fight the heat and riding rides that scare you, just for the thrill. It also involves attending the fair — no matter how uncomfortable it gets.

"It's the last day of the fair; we love the fair so we can't miss it," Pete and Jewel Vang said. "And it's Hmong day, too!"

Coping skills are definitely to be admired.

"I'm OK right now, but I'm from New Orleans," a man by the water fountain said with a chuckle.

The Vangs also had a mechanism of defense. Pete was wearing an umbrella hat while holding a giant umbrella over his family. 

"One for himself, and one for his family," Jewel chimed in.

The umbrella hat was a hit item. Another man eating Dippin' Dots was wearing one, too.

"It does a really good job," he said. "I noticed the difference between not having it and when I put it on."

Another technique involved beating the crowds and the heat.

"We've been here since about 9:30 today. The lines weren't long; the heat hasn't risen that much and wasn't that hot," Octavia Ruffin said."And now it's getting up there so we're actually going to leave in about 15 minutes!"

Even those defying logic have eyes on the ultimate prize. When it comes to winning the fair, it's all about savoring summer before the freeze. 

"Our summer's coming to an end; everyone returns back to school tomorrow," Ruffin said.

"It's the last day, so it's the last day of summer for the kids, so we're having fun," Tina Vinton said.


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