MICHIGAN (CBS DETROIT) – The 2020 Michigan State Fair originally scheduled to be held on Sept. 3-7 will now be transitioning to a virtual platform.

The virtual fair will be a free online event campaign that will include hourly social media posts consisting of interactive contests and activities, live demonstrations and performances, historical and educational features, and much more.

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“After a long period of deliberation and much consideration, given the current environment and the upmost concern for the safety of our team members, participants, and community, we felt that for this year, it would be better to not host a traditional fair with activations on site at the Suburban Collection Showplace, particularly considering that the facility is still under agreement with the state as an alternate care facility,” said Blair Bowman, Manager of the Michigan State Fair.

“We believe we can provide a very unique and engaging experience virtually and we expect that some of the features we develop this year can be implemented in future years as we continue to build upon the everlasting and evolving tradition of the Michigan State Fair,” said Bowman.

Giving back to the community has always been at the center of the organization since the inception in 2013. In the seven years since they have been in existence, the Michigan State Fair LLC has given a total of $3,230,000 in the form of charitable, financial, and in-kind contributions to community organizations, scholarship recipients, and various charities.

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For the 2020 event, the Michigan State Fair has selected four community causes that they will be directly making donations to. The fair has made an expanded commitment of $50,000 to urban and rural youth scholarships, compared to the $40,000 awarded in 2019. Additional donations have also been committed to the Oakland Avenue Farm in Detroit, Shriners Hospitals for Children, and Military Families United. Through this new virtual effort, the Michigan State Fair is asking the viewers and participants to donate and aid the fair in the support of these highlighted community partners.

With this challenging environment, comes new opportunity. With so many local and county fairs severely impacted, the 4-H members and youth needed a new platform to participate in and showcase their projects. The Michigan State Fair, in partnership with Michigan State University Extension, is launching an exciting new program for Michigan youth: the Michigan State Fair 4-H & Youth Virtual Showcase. This statewide showcase will provide a virtual platform for youth across Michigan to exhibit their work in all project areas and apply for a variety of scholarships. Any Michigan youth ages 5-19 is encouraged to participate; 4-H membership is not required. The Michigan State Fair has committed an additional $10,000 for this program’s participant winners.

For more information and updates on the Michigan State Fair, visit here.

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