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Pritzker favors fried food as Illinois State Fair opens

August 8, 2019
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Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, center, and Illinois Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton, left, unveil the 2019 Illinois State Fair Butter Cow during a ceremony inside the Dairy Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds, Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019, in Springfield, Ill. The theme of this year's butter cow, made of 800 pounds of recycled butter by artist Sarah Pratt, is "Building Our Future" and contains nine hearts hidden within the sculpture that represent the essential nutrients found in dairy products. (Justin L. Fowler/The State Journal-Register via AP)
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Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, center, and Illinois Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton, left, unveil the 2019 Illinois State Fair Butter Cow during a ceremony inside the Dairy Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds, Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019, in Springfield, Ill. The theme of this year's butter cow, made of 800 pounds of recycled butter by artist Sarah Pratt, is "Building Our Future" and contains nine hearts hidden within the sculpture that represent the essential nutrients found in dairy products. (Justin L. Fowler/The State Journal-Register via AP)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Gov. J.B. Pritzker, joined by Olympic gold medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee, cut the ribbon marking the opening of the Illinois State Fair.

Also attending Thursday’s ribbon cutting was Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton. The 161st annual agricultural showcase runs until Aug. 18.

Pritzker was asked Wednesday to name his favorite caloric concoctions. He said, “Virtually anything fried tastes great, literally — and I’ve seen virtually everything fried.”

The governor spoke after he and Agriculture Director John Sullivan unveiled the sculpted butter cow. Sullivan says the 800-pound (363-kilogram) homage to the state’s dairy industry is a nearly century-old tradition.

Pritzker says he didn’t brave any carnival rides when he visited the fair last year as a candidate for governor. He wouldn’t commit to one this year.

“Definitely not after I eat food,” he quipped.

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