The Minnesota State Fair is offering services for people with disabilities to enjoy this year's fair.
From Aug. 24 to Sept. 4, crowds will flock to the Twin Cities for the annual Get-Together. There are many options are for people with limited mobility, who are visually or hearing impaired or who have sensory-processing challenges. Here's what's available.
Electric Mobility Scooters
Guests are welcome to bring their own electric scooters and wheelchairs.
Electric mobility scooters, strollers, wagons and wheelchairs provided by HomeTown Mobility can be rented between 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Rentals at the five locations inside the fairgrounds' main gates are on a first-come basis, but advanced reservations can also be made online or by calling HomeTown Mobility's office.
Deadline for advance reservations is 5 p.m. the day prior before using the scooter.
Rental fees range between $20 to $75 per day depending on the scooter's type. More information on where to rent is on the State Fair's website.
Transportation and Parking
On-Site Parking: Vehicles with a disability parking certificate can park in the Camel, Robin and West and East Como lots on the state fairgrounds for $20 per day. Spots are available on a first-come basis.
Park and Ride: A free Park and Ride lot with wheelchair-accessible buses is available to people with disability parking certificates or license plates. The lot is located at 1039 De Courcy Circle, St. Paul, MN 55108.
Buses run between 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. and drop off and pick up at Como Loop Gate #9.
Metro Mobility: The service can drop off and pick up passengers outside of North End Gate #2 or at Como Loop Gate #9.
ASL Interpreter Services
ASL interpreters are available between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. upon request during the fair.
Requests can be made either via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 651-288-4448 or at the fair at Guest Relations at Visitors Plaza. Interpreters can also be requested for Bandshell Tonight! and Grandstand shows.
ASL interpretation will also be available at some free shows without a reservation; a show list can be found on the fair's website.
Captioning and audio description services
Captioning will be offered at the MNHS Presents History On-A-Schtick, Draft Horse Supreme Six Horse Hitch Classic Series and 4-H Llama-Alpaca Costume Contest with no reservations required.
Audio description services will also be offered at MNHS Presents History On-A-Schtick as well as the Timberworks Lumberjack Show and Theatre Day at Dan Patch Park. Headsets can be picked up from the audio describer, who will be near the stage before the show begins.
Show schedules that will have captioning or audio description services can be found on the state fair's website.
Several wheelchair seating locations are available for purchase online, over the phone or in person. Elevators and a ramp are available for guests using wheelchairs to access the grandstand, and an accessibility map will be posted on the fair's website soon, according to its accessibility guide.
For fairgoers with sensory challenges, the Fraser Sensory Building will offer a space for those who need to regulate with tools like weighted blankets, shoulder wraps, calming music and more.
The building is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and located on the west side of Cosgrove Street.
Mighty Midway and Kidway will also host a sensory-friendly morning on Aug. 28. Between 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at Kidway and 10 a.m. to noon at Mighty Midway, crews will minimized lights, sounds and non-safety announcements.
The State Fair also has a list of tips for fair-goers with sensory sensitivities on its website.
Momentum Refresh is a fully accessible and mobile restroom equipped with a changing table, ceiling hoist and other amenities.
Located on the east side of Cosgrove Street, the restroom offers a space for people with mobility limitations and their caregivers. A team of trained professionals will also help maintain and clean the space. The restroom will be open between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, with the exception of Labor Day and will close at 8 p.m.