Iowa Pork Activities at the Iowa State Fair


The Iowa Pork Producers Association plays several roles during the Iowa State Fair, and I’d like to share some opportunities that you may find fun to include in your reporting over the next 11 days.

Iowa Pork Tent:

  • This is the 40th anniversary of the Iowa Pork Tent at the Iowa State Fair. To celebrate, we’ll have 1980s’ pricing on the pork burger every day from 2-4 p.m. That’s $2 a sandwich – the pork burger was one of two items first offered at the Iowa Pork Tent.
  • It takes about 900 volunteers to operate the Iowa Pork Tent and two Chop Shops during the run of the fair.
  • While it’s not a national election year, there are still plenty of celebrity chefs that stop to cook at the Iowa Pork Tent during the fair. Here are some that are scheduled for this year:
  • Governor Kim Reynolds, Sunday, Aug. 15 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, Monday, Aug. 16 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Zippy Duvall, President of the American Farm Bureau, Wednesday, Aug 18, 5-7 p.m.
  • If you are looking for an interview, you can stop by the Pork Tent and ask for either Kelsey Sutter or Drew Mogler. Both can talk to you about activities there.


  • Bacon Buddies Swine Show:
    • Sixteen Special Olympics Iowa athletes will become Bacon Buddies on Saturday, Aug. 14, at 6:30 p.m. at the Swine Barn on the fairgrounds. It will be in the east show ring in the barn.
    • They’ll pair up with 4-H and FFA mentors and use that opportunity to show a pig at the Iowa State Fair. Can anything be more quintessential Iowa State Fair? We think not!
    • John Kliegl, president and CEO of Special Olympics Iowa, will be at the show and available for interviews. You might also catch one of the 32 mentors and find out why they volunteered to share their state fair experience with others.


    Farrowing Display at the Animal Learning Center:

    • Approximately 25,000 walk through the farrowing display at the Animal Learning Center on the state fairgrounds. This is an opportunity to see 6 sows and their litters – most of which are born during the early days of the fair. Pig farmers are on-hand to answer questions about pig production.
    • Where do those sows and pigs go after the fair? There are several FFA programs around the state that adopt the sows and pigs to use for teaching high school students about pork production.

    Sampling in the Ag Building:

    • You’ve seen the lines in the Ag Building as people wind around waiting for samples of Iowa’s commodities. Yes, the egg on a stick is a popular hit, but IPPA is there, too, on Friday, Aug. 13; Monday, Aug. 16; and Wednesday, Aug. 18, giving away pork samples. You know you’ve been to the fair if you’ve stood in line at the Ag Building!