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2021 Minnesota State Fair passes half a million guests in 5 days

This comes after Monday's attendance total wasn't far off from the 2019 number.
Melissa Turtinen - Minnesota State Fair 2021

The Minnesota State Fair reported attendance of 91,568 for Monday, pushing it past the half-million mark for 2021.

The daily figure is just a few thousand people off the 2019 attendance of 96,716 for the first Monday of the fair. It's well behind 2018 (124,438) however, and more than 50,000 short of the all-time daily record for that day (144,504, set in 2017).

Through five days, Great Minnesota Get-Together attendance is now at 510,188, pushing the fair — which, in addition to the ongoing pandemic, dealt with poor weather over its first three days — over the half-million mark.

Related: Hundreds have gotten the COVID vaccine — and $100 — at MN State Fair

Attendance still lags overall compared to recent years.

So far, the number of fairgoers is about 67% of the average five-day attendance total for 2016-19. In these four most recent years, total attendance hovered around the 750,000 mark from opening day through the first Monday.

Crowds typically peak during the State Fair's final weekend. The all-time, single-day attendance record of 270,426 was set during the last Saturday of the 2018 fair.

Related: Minnesota State Fair 2021: The best food options that avoid the crowds

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At the midway point, how is MN State Fair attendance stacking up?

Here's a look at how this year's numbers compare to the four most recent fairs.

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MN State Fair sees sharp drop in attendance for opening day

The 2021 figure was less than half of opening day attendance in 2019.

Melissa Turtinen - Minnesota State Fair 2021

Will MN State Fair attendance pick up for the final weekend?

Attendance has been below 90,000 five times this year — figures not seen in the past decade.

Melissa Turtinen - MN State Fair 2021

Stronger final weekend, but total State Fair attendance down 36%

Overall attendance was ultimately down about 36% compared to recent years.

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WCCO Radio drops out of MN State Fair over COVID-19 concerns

The station said Thursday it is pulling out of the fair, noting staff health and safety come first.

Melissa Turtinen - MN State Fair 2021

340 COVID cases have been linked to the MN State Fair

About 1.3 million people attended the event over the 12 days.