Fairly Delicious: Don’t Miss the Return of the Fair Food Shindig

James Johonnott, photos by Branden Nall |

A food stand at the Northern Wisconsin State Fair in 2018.
A food stand at the Northern Wisconsin State Fair in 2018.

It’s a year without state and county fairs, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on your fair food favorites.

In lieu of this year’s event – which was canceled because of you-know-what – the Northern Wisconsin State Fair hosted a “Fair Food Shindig” in July, during which food vendors sold fried favorites for you to feast upon. Because of the popularity of the event, the NWSF is hosting another shindig this coming weekend. It will run Friday, Aug. 21, and Saturday, Aug. 22, from 11am-8pm, as well as Sunday, Aug. 23 from 11am-5pm at the fairgrounds, 225 Edward St. in Chippewa Falls.

“We had such a fun turn out with our July Fair Food Shindig that we wanted to offer up a second opportunity for the community to enjoy the fair food they love,” said Rusty Volk, executive director of the Northern Wisconsin State Fairgrounds Association.

Expect sweet treats like caramel apples, ice cream, pies, and funnel cakes, as well as fried food faves like cheese curds, corn dogs, chili dogs, and deep-fried grilled cheese. If you’re looking for something hearty, Island Vibe Food Stand is serving up Caribbean favorites like jerk chicken and pork sandwiches, and Chippewa Valley Cheesesteak has a variety of cheese steak sandwiches (obviously), fried fish, shrimp po’boys, crispy chicken, burgers, and more.

Here are menus and more details:

Food Vendors

Optimist Club Stand

Fried cheese curds, corndogs, French fries, chile fries, hot dogs, chili dogs.

Kiwanis Club Stand

Ice cream, caramel apples, popcorn, coffee, main street café pies

Island Vibe Food Stand

Jerk chicken, jerk pork, grilled pork sandwich, brown stew beef, rice & beans, french fries, steamed cabbage, fried plantains.

Chippewa Valley Cheesesteak

Cheesesteak sandwiches, shrimp sandwiches, crispy chicken, burgers, fried fish, and more.

TNT Concessions

Deep fried grilled cheese (bacon, pepperoni, pepper jack, or plain) with, lemonade, Campbell’s® tomato soup.

Shills’ Funnel Cakes (NEW!)

Funnel cakes (classic, maple & bacon, chocolate & bacon, peanut butter crunch, Oreo®, strawberry-rhubarb cheesecake); mini donuts (up to two toppings – chocolate, maple, bacon, Oreo®, peanut butter, cheesecake, strawberry-rhubarb, powder sugar, Butterfinger® pieces); deep-fried candy bars (Oreos®, snickers).

The Northern Wisconsin State Fair Association has also detailed the following safety recommendations and guidelines:

  • Spacing of food stands will be far apart to allow ample space for physical distancing
  • Food stand workers engaging the customer are required to wear Face Masks and gloves
  • Hand sanitation available for customers when ordering, paying for, and receiving food.
  • Social distance markings will be on the pavement leading up to food stands to identify spacing.
  • Customers will drive in, park their vehicles, walk to food stands.
  • Ample space for social distancing and face mask usage required if within 6 feet of others. (Signs at the venue)
  • Customers purchase foods to take home or use picnic tables spread out on venue grassy areas.
  • Restrooms will be sanitized with one-way traffic, social distancing, and face mask usage.

Find out more on the Northern Wisconsin State Farm website.