SPRINGFIELD – Keeping up with Illinois State Fair tradition, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich, along with First Lady Patricia Blagojevich, today cut the ribbon at the Main Gate of the Fairgrounds to officially open the 10-day event. The 155th Illinois State Fair began today and runs through Sunday, August 19th. The theme of this year’s Illinois State Fair is “Celebrate and Educate.”
“The Illinois State Fair is a summertime tradition that my family and I look forward to every year. With top notch entertainment, fantastic food, and fun rides, the Fair has something for everyone in the family to enjoy,” said Gov. Blagojevich.
The Governor’s tent is located near the main entrance of the Fairgrounds on the corner of Main Street and Brian Raney Avenue, and it highlights many of the administration’s initiatives and accomplishments in healthcare, economic development, and public safety. Displays highlight the healthcare programs currently available through the state, the ways Illinois is tackling global warming, prescription drug programs available to seniors, the $1 billion FutureGen clean coal-to-energy project, and feature films that have been brought to Illinois.
The First Lady’s tent focuses on women’s and children’s health through a variety of interactive and informational displays. In the tent, visitors can find information on ICHIP, a state program that provides an insurance-like benefit for Illinois residents who qualify; members of the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization will offer information on their free services for breast cancer patients; and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will provide blood pressure screenings and offer information about child safety seats.
The First Lady’s tent also features interactive and informational activities provided by the DuPage Children’s Museum, Kohl’s Children’s Museum of Glenview, the Chicago Children’s Museum, and the Discovery Center Museum in Rockford, including a small plane painted to appear like a giant fish that children are able to climb into. And, Prevent Blindness America will provide information on common childhood vision disorders and the four major adult aging eye diseases.
The Governor’s and First Lady’s tents are open daily from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.