• As I noted in my Wednesday column, I always make a trip to the Fine Arts Building. I like that the state fair showcases a variety of talented Missourians beyond livestock shows and I think it’s worth a visit to see what our state’s artists have to offer. This year, I have another reason to visit: two people I know have art featured. Reporter Faith Bemiss is showcased in the Missouri Top 50, housed on the second floor, and received an honorable mention. My boyfriend, Andy Lyons, submitted two entries in the Photography category and received an honorable mention for one of them. Some talented photographers among us! — Editor Nicole Cooke

• I've noticed the trend of child leashes is back. As a former leashed child, let me assure you your kids will turn out fine. — Columnist Jennifer Langdon

• Overheard at the fair as I was walking behind a family entering the fairgrounds: “There’s the farm, can you smell it?” the child said as she pointed towards the grounds. “I can smell it.”

• I broke my record by breaking my media badge on day one. Maybe next year I'll break it before the fair starts! — Columnist Jennifer Langdon

• I ate lunch at the Missouri Grown Bistro on Friday. It offers a different take on fair food, using Missouri-grown and made products in their salads, wraps, sandwiches, burgers and breakfast offerings. Don’t get me wrong, I still like traditional fair food (the first thing I ate Thursday was a corndog). But the Bistro offers some variety for those of us at the fair almost every day. Don’t just take my word for it: while I was there, Missouri Director of Agriculture Chris Chinn and Missouri State Fair Marketing Director Kari Mergen were eating lunch at the Bistro too. — Editor Nicole Cooke

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