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Oink Booth hats: Paper hats given away at the Oink Booth in the Swine Barn, ca. 2012. The pink pig-eared hats were originally handed out by the Department of Agriculture in the 1990s and then by the Oink Booth starting in 1995. (Photo courtesy of the Minnesota State Fair)

Remembering past State Fair fads

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By Jaime DeLage

St. Paul Pioneer Press

One year it was the square yardstick.

Is a square yardstick better than a flat one? That’s not important. What was important at the Minnesota State Fair in 1977 was that you got to the Rochester Silo Co. booth for your yardstick, a square one with a leather wrist strap, really more of a walking stick than a measuring device.

The Rochester Silo yardsticks were almost too successful.

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