COLUMBUS - Family fun and a connection to rural Ohio are just two of the many reasons for visitors to stop by the Land and Living Exhibit at the Ohio State Fair, July 26 to Aug. 6. Presented by Ohio Farm Bureau Federation and Nationwide, the exhibit demonstrates agriculture's link to everyday life.
Visitors to the exhibit, located in the Nationwide Donahey Ag & Hort building, can participate in a variety of interactive opportunities such as playing with local rescue dogs, learning about nutrition in the reimagined grocery store display and watching chicks and turkeys come out of their shells. The ever-popular Country Cruise pedal tractors are back for children to enjoy, as is the augmented reality sandbox, a water quality learning tool that made its successful debut last year. Throughout the building, everyone can enjoy learning about Ohio's crops, animals and other important areas of Ohio agriculture. Families can also have a commemorative picture taken, compliments of OFBF and Nationwide.
In addition, the Land and Living Exhibit activities include the Country Connection stage that will feature demonstrations such as agriscience experiments, local entertainment, visits from Columbus Zoo animals and more. Squash carver Gus Smithhisler will be back again this year to carve giant squash weighing more than 600 pounds each on July 26, 29, 31 and Aug. 2. A joint Ohio House and Senate Ag Committee Hearing will be held Aug. 1.
This year the OFBF grocery store inside the Land and Living Exhibit is more interactive than ever. Building on last year's display, children can go through this child-sized store and pick out their own groceries. This exhibit for youth provides the opportunity to learn more about putting together complete, quality meals. Each child who visits the grocery leaves with a goodie bag.
"With so many exciting activities, the Land and Living Exhibit is informational and interactive for all ages," said OFBF intern Abby Pozderac. "We hope visitors leave with a better understanding of the many facets of agriculture in Ohio."
The Land and Living Exhibit is supported by the Ohio Soybean Council, Ohio Corn Marketing Program and the Ohio Expositions Commision. Last year, the exhibit attracted an estimated 300,000 state fair visitors. The Land and Living Exhibit is located east of the giant slide and across from the south entrance to the midway. All exhibits in the building are free.