Skip to main content

Foodie news site Heavy Table pulls out of MN State Fair

They've been reviewing fair foods since 2010.

A second Twin Cities media outlet has announced it won't be attending the 2021 Minnesota State Fair.

Foodie news and culinary review website Heavy Table, which has been covering the fair's food offerings since 2010, says they've decided to withdraw from the event amid concerns about the Delta variant.

In an editorial explaining the decision, Heavy Table cites the fair's recent controversial move not to require masks, vaccinations or negative COVID tests for entry.

They called it a "disappointing pivot" away from the fair's "foundational roots," which encouraged "public health through example, through encouragement, and through education."

"We’d no sooner review food at the Fair this year than we’d write a post entitled Top 10 Things to Eat Inside of a Geologically Unstable Cave System Sprinkled with Potentially Deadly Methane Pockets."

- Heavy Table

The editorial also criticizes the fair for relying on "the general public to 'do the right thing,'" saying a "significant portion of the American population" regards doing the right thing as "refusing to mask, refusing to vaccinate, and refusing to self-isolate even when sick."

"Personal initiative is not a substitute for institutional mandates," Heavy Tables writes. "The fact that the effort of trying to enforce safety standards would be 'extremely difficult' does not absolve the Fair of its duty."

"We would love to go to the Minnesota State Fair, and our decision not to cover its new foods this year is collectively breaking our hearts. But until the Fair shows itself to be safe and committed to public health, we can’t in good conscience endorse or promote it."

- Heavy Table

This follows a similar decision by WCCO Radio, which this week announced it would not be broadcasting from the 2021 fair.

"The Fair chose the ‘honor system’ and for our decision-makers, it is not enough to feel comfortable," the station said in a statement.

A number of other fair mainstays will also not be in attendance this year, with more than 100 vendors deciding to pull out of the event not only to due COVID, but also staffing shortages. 

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-05-24 at 5.21.04 PM

Ex-South St. Paul coach dies by suicide 2 days before sentencing

Matthew McCollister was to be sentenced for fraud in federal court on Wednesday.


Minnesota 'glampground' named one of 10 best in U.S.

In Nevis, Minnesota, campers can stay in a refurbished 1905 train car.

Screen Shot 2022-01-28 at 9.04.12 AM

Two men charged over terrifying armed robbery at Newport apartment

They shot the woman who lives in the apartment in the abdomen, and put a gun to a man's head.

Minneapolis police

Minneapolis 2-year-old identified in suspicious death case

The cause of death has not yet been revealed due to an ongoing investigation.

Arianna Vos

Victim of wrong-way driver crash ID'd as Hutchinson 19-year-old

Three women, ages 19, 20 and 20, were in the vehicle struck by a wrong-way driver early Sunday morning.

Julissa Thaler

Eli Hart killing: Police investigating multiple crime scenes

An announcement Tuesday confirmed potential crime scenes in Mound and Minnetrista.

SEIU Healthcare Minnesota strike.

Twin Cities mental health workers gather for 1-day strike

More than 400 mental health workers are participating in the unionized strike on Tuesday.

Bloomington Fire

HAZMAT team at Bloomington hotel following chemical spill in pool

The fire department said two hotel employees are being evaluated by paramedics.

Screen Shot 2022-03-24 at 9.21.32 AM

Big Brothers Big Sisters Twin Cities gets $6M of Mackenzie Scott donation

The donation is the largest the organization has ever seen from a single individual.

Hennepin Avenue S.

Minneapolis accused of backtracking on 24/7 bus lanes for Hennepin Ave.

The Minneapolis City Council is set to vote on Thursday.

Pexels - face mask covid holding

Duluth brings back masking in city buildings amid COVID surge

Duluth, in one of the state's current COVID hotspots, has brought back a mask requirement in city buildings.


Minnesota State Fair - main gate day 2021

MN disability agency pulls out of State Fair over COVID policies

The Minnesota Council on Disability cited a "lack of leadership" on pandemic measures.

Education Minnesota at State Fair, 2019

Education Minnesota latest organization to exit State Fair

Many vendors and exhibitors will not be in attendance this year.

Minnesota State Fair

About 150 vendors aren't returning to the State Fair this year

Vendors have cited COVID-19 concerns as well as the labor shortage as reasons for dropping out.