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An Insider’s Perspective of The Original Deep Fried Cheese Curd Booth at The State Fair

Photo courtesy of Joe Peterson
Photo courtesy of Joe Peterson (Pictured far right)

Many of you have heard or seen the news on social media about “The Original Cheese Curd” booth closing down at The Minnesota State Fair. For me, this goes beyond one less place to get this squeaky delicacy, but is more about a long time friend who worked this booth.

My friend Joe Peterson, born and raised in St. Paul, worked at The Original State Fair Cheese Curd Booth for 35 years. Of course, the fair only goes on for a few weeks each summer; so Joe would take time off from his full time job, throw on the apron and work day and night to make these delicious cheese curds. The reason? He loved the family behind the business and all the people working the booth with him.

As you can imagine, this would not be an easy job, it gets extremely hot in the building making the cheese curds and they had to work fast to keep up with demand. From the first time I met Joe, I always remember his passion in talking about working at the booth. He would always say he would not miss it for the world and as hard as the work is, the people that make it a great experience. Even when he moved out to California for a few years, he would fly back to come work at The Fair. That is above and beyond dedication.

The owners of The Original Cheese Curd Booth decided to retire and wanted to pass the business down to their son, but the Fair did not approve the transfer so the booth will be no more. Other cheese curd booths are available at the State Fair, but as of now the building they used for so many years will be selling something else.

Many people are very passionate about these particular cheese curds and a petition has been circulating to bring it back .

For more on this story click here.






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