Enjoy The State Fair Safely
Excitement is already growing as the opening day of the Minnesota State Fair approaches on Thursday. We have some advice to make sure you enjoy the fair safely and in good health.
Minnesotans love the State Fair. From the amusement rides and exhibits to the deep-fried treats and adorable animals, our fair is a 12-day extravaganza bursting with entertainment for just about every taste. Sunny days, bustling crowds, twirling rides, and an array of wildly imaginative foods, including SPAM burgers and BBQ pickle ice cream, make for an irresistible family outing. Keep our useful tips in mind to help you fill your fair experience with great memories—and avoid accidental injuries.
- Respect the rules on amusement rides. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, amusement park rides and water slides cause thousands of injuries serious enough to require emergency room treatment; about half of those injured are children. The most common ride injuries include head, neck, and back injuries; stroke from neck trauma; and lacerations, broken bones, and torn ligaments. If rides are part of your fair experience, read and obey all posted rules and restrictions. Abide by the posted age, weight, and height requirements for rides. Make sure doors and restraints are securely latched, use the seat belts and grab bars provided, and stay in position until the ride comes to a final stop.
- Choose your footwear wisely. The most common problem treated at the Minnesota State Fair is blistered feet. Sandals are especially problematic; when you are on your feet for hours at a time, you may discover rough, rubbing strap edges the hard way. State Fair physicians distribute approximately 3,000 Band-Aids over the course of the fair every year. Their advice? Wear comfortable closed-toed shoes and leave your sandals at home.
- Drink plenty of fluids. Approximately 30 to 60 fair-goers seek treatment for dehydration every day during fair festivities. Don’t ignore feelings of thirst. Water is always a great choice.
- Be aware of stinging insects. The fair is a celebration of rural life. Flowers, fruits, and sticky goodies tend to attract bees, and bee-stung fair-goers show up at the medical tents every year.
- Keep an eye on youngsters. Stray seeds from seed art, raisins, and other small objects seem to attract curious fingers. Children can’t seem to resist checking to see if their new treasures will fit in their nose. Extractions by medical personnel are more common than you might suspect.
- Finally, remember that even the most ravenous appetite can handle only so many sweet treats and fried nibbles before the body rebels. Pace yourself; don’t cut short your visit to appease a queasy tummy.
Our State Fair is a wonderful way to celebrate Minnesota’s rural history and make the most of summer’s final weeks. With a few precautions and a little sensible care, your fair experience will be filled with safe family fun.
Emerging research warns that high school football athletes aren’t alone in facing concussion risks.
Dr. Boettcher describes his areas of specialty and philosophy of care.
Regenerative PRP and BMAC therapies offer promising options for pain relief and improved function.