(St Paul, MN) — August 31st, 2022 — The Eco Experience, sponsored by Xcel Energy, is a partnership of the State Fair, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and dozens of organizations and businesses across the state. It is the largest environmental education event of its kind in the country. Here are just a few of this year’s highlights – all free with fair admission.
- Land of the Loon – Protecting Minnesota’s iconic state bird
- A roadside attraction for 40 years in Virginia, Minn., the world’s largest floating loon makes a special State Fair visit! The loon is part spectacle (it’s 20’ long!) and part serious-talk about how we can reduce the threats to the common loon, such as using lead-free tackle, keeping lakes clean and shorelines natural, and taking action to reduce climate change. Come see this historic Minnesota icon, and get a free sample of lead-free tackle and a loon temporary tattoo!
- Giant Cardboard Moose Sculpture
- What better way to showcase that paper products – like the cardboard used in this sculpture of Minnesota’s largest animal – make up the largest portion of what Minnesotans recycle. In fact, 380,000 tons of cardboard alone went to recycling facilities in 2020.
- Cell Phone Recycling
- Recycling electronics waste helps to capture valuable materials. Dispose of your used cell phones and other devices in our Tech Dump box, and Tech Dump will destroy the data, then recycle or refurbish the items.
- Reuse and Repair in Our Communities
- When we talk about reuse and how it contributes to more sustainable living, we often focus on reusable bags, cups and packaging. These are great switches, but it’s also important to explore reuse, rental and repair opportunities with other products we use, including electronics, building materials, home goods, clothing and more. Stop by this new booth to get some helpful how-to ideas from a variety of reuse, rental and repair organizations and businesses located right in our own backyard.
- Community Science Program of the Day
- Data collected by volunteers can help professional scientists answer research questions about wild plant and animal populations, as well as environmental conditions such as water clarity or temperature. Join a volunteer data collection program, and start making a difference for clean water and climate right away. This citizen science community table will feature different volunteer programs throughout the fair, including Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Volunteer Water Monitoring Program (Aug. 25); Bluebird Recovery Program of Minnesota (Aug. 26); University of Minnesota – Bee Lab (Aug. 27); Minnesota DNR – Minnesota Loon Restoration Program (Aug. 28 & 29); Minnesota Dragonfly Society (Aug. 30); Starry Skies North (Aug. 31); University of Minnesota Extension (Sept. 1); Izaak Walton League of America – Salt Watch (Sept. 2); River Watch (Sept. 3); and Wetland Health Evaluation Program (Sept. 4 & 5)
Daily, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (8 p.m. on Labor Day). Specific activity times may vary