Michigan State Fair to go virtual this summer

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

One of the area's many late-summer attractions, the Michigan State Fair announced Friday it would be a virtual-only event this Labor Day weekend. 

Originally scheduled for Sept. 3-7 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, this year's activities will be held online for free. Events include hourly social media posts with interactive contests, activities, live demonstrations and performances. 

“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 state as an alternate care facility,” Michigan State Fair manager Blair Bowman said in a press release issued Friday afternoon.

Donovan Hindo of West Bloomfield Township rides the carousel at 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.”

The virtual fair will include some charitable efforts, and has made commitments of $50,000 to urban and rural youth scholarships, up $10,000 from last year's award. 

Visit michiganstatefairllc.com for more information. 

Earlier this month another Labor Day weekend tradition, the Detroit Jazz Festival announced it would be going virtual this year, with performances broadcast live from sound stages at the Detroit Marriott in the Renaissance Center. 

People view giant pumpkins during the first day at the Michigan State Fair.

Other annual events for that weekend, the unofficial end of summer, include the Hamtramck Labor Day Festival, which was canceled months ago and Arts, Beats and Eats in Royal Oak. Organizers for that event are excepted to announce their plans soon. 

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Twitter: @melodybaetens