Food Vendors Ready for the 92nd Du Quoin State Fair

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By Evie Allen
By Benjy Jeffords

DU QUOIN -- Staff have spent the day on finishing touches at the Du Quoin fairgrounds, and food vendors are firing up the fryers and grills.

In less than 24 hours, people will be flocking to Perry County for the start of the Du Quoin State Fair.

Carnival rides and great food go hand-in-hand, from the mouth-watering meats to the delicious sweet treats.
 
"We'll start cooking tonight to be ready for tomorrow," said Mike Mills.
 
Known for his world famous BBQ, Mills gets his popular meat started the night before.
 
"BBQ is a low and slow method. It will take all night long, 12 to 14 hours to cook our shoulders, our butts and briskets that we'll use here at the fair," he explained Thursday afternoon.
 
Joanie Foster and her husband have been feeding people at the fair for over 25 years. Her stand offers homemade buns, fresh cinnamon roles and her one of a kind blanket dogs.
 
"Everything that's made out of bread, I make it here. And we have hamburgers and we make our buns. We make a philly cheese steak sandwich on a homemade bun," she added.
 
Inspired by this years theme, "Love A Fair," she decided to add a little something special to her cinnamon rolls. She's going to be drizzling them with chocolate along with her original frosting. Friday morning she'll get up when it's still dark and begin baking the homemade treats.
 
"Usually I have some help in the afternoon and I take a power nap between 2 and 4 p.m."
 
She said she expects to see many lined up for her food daily. And In the words of one of the customers, she puts herself into her baking and that means love goes into the making.
 
In her 70s she shows no signs of retiring. On Monday her and her husband will celebrate 52 years of marriage. And they'll be right at there at the fairgrounds.
 
"If you love what you're doing and you love the person that you're with," she adds, "why do you have to do anything else?"
 
There are dozens more vendors to try. The carnival opens Friday at 3 p.m., followed by the parade at 6 p.m.
 
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