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Roller Coaster And Cheaper Beer At 2018 Illinois State Fair

Jaclyn Driscoll
NPR Illinois
State Fair Manager Luke Sailer highlights new attractions for 2018 Illinois State Fair

The Illinois State Fair kicks off next week with the annual Twilight parade on Thursday, August 9th. The fair will run until the following Sunday, August 19th. 

Attendance for 2017 State Fair reached 500,000 and newly appointed State Fair Manager Luke Sailer said he’s hoping for even more this year. At the press preview day on Thursday, Sailer highlighted new attractions like the fair’s first roller coaster, grandstand performances and dropping beer prices from $5 to $4.

“Whenever you hit this fairgrounds it’s something that’s special," said Sailer. "This is your state fair and we want all fairgoers to relish in that and celebrate that.”

The Coliseum will remain closed again this year which is just one of many deferred maintenance issues that total up to roughly $180 million. The state did appropriate $30 million for repairs and renovations, but Sailer says details on how it will be spent are still being decided. 

“What we plan on doing with that 30 million is going to the landscaping and the beautification of the Illinois State Fairgrounds drastically,” said Sailer. 

Megapasses and grandstand tickets are still for sale. Information can be found here

Jaclyn has an MA in Journalism from DePaul University and a BS in History form Monmouth College. Prior to reporting, Jaclyn was a social science teacher and department chair at Greenfield High School. Previously, Jaclyn reported for WICS Newschannel 20 where she covered a variety of assignments including courts, politics, and breaking news. She also reported at Siouxland News in Sioux City Iowa, the shared CBS/Fox television newsroom. Her internships included WGN and Comcast SportsNet in Chicago.
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