The Indiana Insider Blog

Ways to be Healthy (And Still Have Fun) at the Indiana State Fair (#INStateFair)

This morning I heard that Dr. Oz is visiting the Indiana State Fair this afternoon. I’m guessing he’ll have a few things to say about all the fried, sugary foods available. And while these tasty treats are certainly part of the State Fair experience, you don’t have to wreck your diet when visiting. (Although I have trouble resisting the mix-your-own slushies myself!)

I visited the Indiana State Fair with my mom, who is really into healthy eating as a way of life. So when lunchtime rolled around, we headed to the Ball State Ag/Hort Building just off the Midway to sample the food at the Farmers Market Cafe. They serve a selection of fresh salads, sandwiches, fruit cups, etc. Plus, the building is cool and relatively crowd-free, with ample seating available. So even if you’re not on a health kick, it’s a great spot for lunch or dinner. And if you absolutely must indulge in something fried, you’ll find fried tofu on a stick at the cafe! (It is the Year of the Soybean, afterall.)

To me, the best part about the Indiana State Fair is wandering around and exploring. This Saturday, August 13, you can do that with First Lady Cheri Daniels at the Heartland Walk for Health. It’s a 2-lap walk around the Fairground’s Track of Champions. The event begins at 8 a.m. at the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand Lot. Pre-registration is now closed, by walk-up registrations will be accepted.

You can also drop by Clarian’s Dance for Health Stage. Performances are scheduled for nearly every hour on the hour beginning at 11 a.m., and include cloggers, hula dancers, line dancing, and everything in between. You could learn a few moves and burn some calories in the process.

Other health-related activities at the Fair include:

  •  Clarian Health Zone, where you can get a free diabetes risk assessment. Available daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Expo Hall.
  • Read, Taste, & Touch, a reading, agriculture and nutrition program for kids ages 4-6, sponsored by Purdue Extension. Daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Ball State Ag/Hort Building.
  • Governor Daniels’ INShape Indiana SummerFit Plaza & Get Fit with IU Health, in the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand Side Lot. Free classes are offered to fairgoers, with different themes each day including rowing, yoga, and dance. Runs through August 14.

Photo courtesy of INShape Indiana.





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Written by : Nicole is a stay-at-home mom and blogger living in Columbus, Indiana. She blogs about adventures at home and away with her husband and 2-year-old son at She grew up in Plainfield, Indiana and graduated from Butler University in 2002. She grew up in Plainfield, Indiana and graduated from Butler University in 2002. She spent seven years living and working in downtown Indianapolis following college. Nicole is always looking for fun, kid-friendly outing ideas. You can contact her via email or find her on Twitter at @arrowssentforth. Nicole receives compensation from the Indiana Office of Tourism Development for blogging. For more information, see our FTC Disclosure page.