Heat drains Minnesota State Fair crowds and sales - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Heat drains Minnesota State Fair crowds and sales


FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (KTTC) -- Three straight days of brutal heat and high humidity have Minnesota State Fair vendors praying for a little relief, with some reporting that their sales have been cut in half.

Officials say attendance is down nearly 40,000 people compared to this time last year, when the weather was similarly hot.

"You can't control the weather, that's the one thing you can't control," Brienna Schuette, the fair's marketing and communications manager, explained.

"It's just that way. The heat takes the ambition away. They don't want to eat. They don't want to turn out and I don't blame them," Spaghetti Eddie and Deep Fried Twinkie stand owner Ed Porcelli said, before noting business has really dipped.

"It's a good 50 percent, a solid 50 percent off," he added.

Bruce Kaufman was peddling golf carts in the shadow of Eddie's place.

"It's not too bad. It's tolerable," he said when asked about the weather, while he was sitting in the shade.

But then he looked down the street.

"Definitely a lot more bare. Normally it's so thick, people are holding their phones up taking pictures of the crowd," he said.

Schuette is not fazed, explaining the glass is half full as the forecast looks favorable for the final weekend, when the fair typically sees its biggest crowds.

"People will wait and they'll come when the weather's better. I think the worst is behind us," she said.

Spaghetti Eddie agrees.

"I think it'll (the humidity) break and once it breaks, they'll go for it. Everybody loves a Twinkie," he concluded, with a smile.

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