Trial Balloon

A Fine, Fun, Fair Friday

Posted at 5:50 AM on August 28, 2009 by Dale Connelly (31 Comments)

Today is the day for our live broadcast from the Minnesota State Fair.

Fair Sign.jpg

We go on the air at 9am from the Minnesota Public Radio booth near the intersection of Judson and Nelson. If you're at the fair this morning, please stop by! We'll have live music from Ann Reed, BoJoNo and The Ditchlilies.

Our 6 to 9am and 11 to 1pm hours of The Dale Connelly Show are recorded today, and Jasper if faithfully playing them back. I'm unable to take requests, sorry.

For the 14th year in a row, we're playing the "Where's Eric" game on the fairgrounds today. Ochen Kaylan and Leslie Ball, our State Fair Ninjas, are ready to track the wayward Eric Ringham as he attempts to elude them again this year.

WE clue 2.jpg

Yesterday, I posted a photo and some clues for finding one of our little Eric dolls, Farmer Eric. He is the special Listener's Challenge - Ochen and Leslie won't be hunting for him - only Radio Heartland listeners can find this one and bring him in.

If you want to search for Farmer Eric, please sign up at the MPR booth after 8 am. We won't credit the retrieval of Farmer Eric to anyone who hasn't signed up. The search begins at 9 a.m.

At 9 a.m. I'll post the first set of clues for Ochen and Leslie's initial challenge - Security Eric.
At 9:40 a.m. I'll post the clues for their second challenge - Fair Fanatic Eric.
At 10:20 a.m., I'll post clues for the ultimate challenge - Genuine Eric.

If a Radio Heartland listener finds Farmer Eric in time, they will be able to join the search team for the final push as we near the end of the show at 11 a.m.!

Good luck everyone, and enjoy the show.

Comments (31)

Morning Heartlanders! Goat pins are made and I'm gathering up my stuff. See you all soon!

Posted by sherrilee | August 28, 2009 6:01 AM

The game is afoot!

Posted by Kris in Minneapolis | August 28, 2009 6:09 AM

Not sure how the blog is going to work at the fair, so if I don't get back, just wanted to say hello to everyone who couldn't be here today: Barb, Donna [has school actually started yet?}, Mark, Tim, Alanna, Kris and anybody else I've missed. Those of us who are "fairing" today will have your spirit with us!

Posted by sherrilee | August 28, 2009 6:12 AM

Good Morning RH,

Thanks for the thoughtful message, Sherrilee!
But please, please - don’t any of you fair goers give it a second thought today while you’re at the show, how my students and I are cooped up in an interior classroom on this beautiful day in August, enduring the insanely early start of our school year that became law a few years ago. I haven’t felt this much envy since first grade when I was passed over for the part of Suzy Snowflake in the winter pageant. The role went to a girl named Janie who may have been more delicate and graceful, but I bet you can guess which one of us was flakier! (I think she was cast primarily because she already had a frilly snow-white dress.)

Here's wishing you a ton of fun and FOR SURE I’ll be there next year, or the year after that, or the following one.

Lora - be careful riding and say “hi” to my buddies.

Posted by Donna | August 28, 2009 6:41 AM

Greetings all - hope those of you at the fair today have a blast. I will be with you in spirit (and without mini donuts, all you can drink milk, butter heads, or the fun of the whacky things for sale in/under the grandstand). I suppose if I can get RH streaming and I close my eyes, I can pretend I'm at Judson and Nelson instead of Corporate America.

Posted by Anna | August 28, 2009 7:30 AM

Thanks for the good wishes, everyone.
Donna, you will always be our Suzy Snowflake.
It's raining at the Fair right now, but the show will go on!
You might consider bringing an umbrella or some raingear.
If you'd like to see what's happening at the booth right now, take a look at the nifty webcam.

Posted by Dale Connelly | August 28, 2009 7:34 AM

I have watched the live broadcast in a storm before! I have my umbrella and I am waiting for my ride!

Posted by Darcy | August 28, 2009 7:53 AM

Hi y'all lucky Trial Balloon/Radio Heartlanders who will be in the audience for the live broadcast. Thanks, Dale, for the webcam link...I'll be listening and looking for folks with goat pins on them from my "hole in the wall" office.


Posted by cynthia in mahtowa | August 28, 2009 7:58 AM

It's NOT's just a light mist. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it!

Posted by Mike Pengra | August 28, 2009 8:18 AM

That mist got pretty noisy. Don't stand under a tree.
Good luck.

Posted by Lu in Plymouth | August 28, 2009 8:29 AM

And it is a lovely day here with a capacity crowd already and we're still 25 min. away from actual lift-off. We're all here for sound check and it IS all that you imagine it could be. Music, feedback, electricity, water...a virtual microcosm of all that is The Fair. All the usual suspects are here. And all is looking ready to go. Mike Pengra has graciously volunteered to act as a ground should any stray voltage or amperage make its way toward us. And, in his capacity as Producer and 'Default Overlord' he has ordered the rain to stop. The fates are considering his order.

But, as Minnesotans, there's no reason why a little rain should stop us...of all people. We take enormous pride in pushing forward despite lousy weather. When we're on one of the coasts, hobnobbing at a 'croquet and lawn bowling soiree' and someone asks, "Where are you from?" and we say, "Minnesota," we enjoy the wince we get. We relish in the wide-eyed wonder and the, "Really?...people still ~live~ there?" reaction.

Anyway, it's a delightful day (no matter what anyone else tells you), this is going to be a fantastic show, and if you aren't here, you can still make it.

Posted by That Guy in the Hat in the Rain | August 28, 2009 8:41 AM

It's fun listening to an open mike and hearing someone say, "Oh crap!" on the air.

Posted by Doug | August 28, 2009 8:53 AM

Or hear Dale say, "Oh, please," as he heard his voice from the RH broadcast.

Posted by Kris in Minneapolis | August 28, 2009 8:59 AM

S U N S H I N E !!!!

Posted by Mike Pengra | August 28, 2009 9:13 AM

Greetings RH! TGitHat, thanks for the ambiance, and thanks to all bloggers giving us a play-by-play action of the show. Love Ann Reed and her fun songs -- sigh -- just can't make it today.

Posted by Joanne in Big Lake | August 28, 2009 9:18 AM

Checking in from my corner of Corporate America. Hope it stays dry for you there - good to get the iPod going and hear Ann Reed! Happy Eric hunting!

Posted by Anna | August 28, 2009 9:21 AM

First time I've missed attending the live show at the fair since it began. Happy to be listening AND watching from my "cube".

Fun Fun Fun.

Posted by Nancy | August 28, 2009 9:25 AM

Good Morning! It sounds like a wonderful audience is on hand, and the musiscians are marvelous! Security Eric has already been found - it's only 9:30am!
It's almost as fun listening as it would be to be
Going to check out the webcam!

Posted by Teri in Zimmerman | August 28, 2009 9:42 AM

We've got a great crowd here today and you all are here with us in spirit. hugs...

Posted by Mike Pengra | August 28, 2009 9:47 AM

The webcam rocks! The sights and sounds of the Fair are coming through with great clarity. Thanks!
If possible, could we see the Goat Pin designer and perhaps a model sporting the objet d'art?

Posted by Teri in Zimmerman | August 28, 2009 10:01 AM

Great show and great music this morning!! Thank you for providing a webcam as well! It's nice to finally put faces to the music :)

Posted by Alanna in MI | August 28, 2009 10:18 AM

My kids are in art - how the hell do you get the webcam?

Posted by Donna | August 28, 2009 10:19 AM

The web cam is at:

Posted by Doug | August 28, 2009 10:28 AM

I can't believe I'm actually watching TGITH blog right now...

Posted by Mike Pengra | August 28, 2009 10:38 AM

Got it Doug!

Posted by Donna | August 28, 2009 10:40 AM

Greetings, salutations, and felicitations from the Fair. As I'm sure most of you heard I, along with most of the other folks that normally contribute, are here enjoying the things first hand and live. If you weren't able to make it here, we certainly miss your energy and participation. And, you know, maybe there's something to splitting our resources a little. After all, if you weren't out there listening, we may not feel as obligated to keep the energy up. So, maybe this works out for the best. You're missed but an audience is a necessary part of this system, so don't feel too're still part of the process. The capacity crowd has not moved an iota, we're all riveted to our seats, enjoying the music and all that the Fair has to offer.

One last thought: my wife and I got here at 7:30am in the rain. As Mike Pengra was squeezeeing off the stage, we were talking about the rain. He looked up to the sky and, in a very matter of fact voice, said, "Stop raining." And within the hour, it had not only stopped raining but the sun came out and it's been beauriful here. So, apparently, Mike has some kind of higher connections than even we knew about. I'm tempted to start a new religion based on "Pengra Power."

Posted by That Guy in the Hat at the Fair | August 28, 2009 10:41 AM

Hi You Guys!

I'm still listening from home. Great show!

Posted by Kathy | August 28, 2009 10:45 AM

I knew Mike Pengra had special powers. I am impressed, though, with the added ability to influence the weather. (Hey Mike - since you can will it to stop raining, can you will a bag of mini donuts into my cubicle? Maybe two so I can share?)

Posted by Anna | August 28, 2009 10:49 AM

Thank you, Mike!

Posted by Doug | August 28, 2009 10:57 AM

I love watching the show online. It's so fun to see everyone on stage, though I wish I could have been there in person. Great show!

Posted by Karen | August 28, 2009 10:58 AM

Gosh...special powers? I don't think so, but strangely enough, the clouds are moving back in now that the broadcast is over. hmm...maybe I have a career in weather forecasting?

Anna, if I knew how to beam some mini donuts to your cubicle, I would.

Posted by Mike Pengra | August 28, 2009 11:01 AM

August 2009
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31          

Master Archive