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Butter cow unveiling coming at Illinois State Fair

Last cow to be sculpted by Sharon BuMann

By Diego Flammini,

With the opening of the Illinois State Fair comes the unveiling of the fair’s mascot – the butter cow sculpture. The sculpture has been a mainstay at the fair for more than 90 years.

The sculpture is still in production but is expected to be completed by next week.

The 2015 version of the butter cow has a little bit of a different feel, as Sharon BuMann, a sculptor from New York who has sculpted many butter cows for the state fairs of Illinois, Kansas and Texas, said 2015 would be her last year sculpting the iconic piece.

Bumann said her ideas of how the cow looks changes to keep with the theme of the fair.

This year's butter cow was inspired by the 2015 Illinois State Fair's theme, Growing Illinois," said BuMann.  "I get my inspiration from my family farm.  This year the sculpture is of a grandfather showing his granddaughter the farm.  I like to add fun and excitement to the sculpture because it's more than just a butter cow.  It's a butter sculpture."

The first butter cow sculpture to appear at a state fair was in 1903 at the Ohio State Fair.

The Illinois State Fair runs until Sunday, August 23rd and features a variety of events and themes for visitors to take in.

Tuesday, August 18th will be “Agriculture Day” at the fair. Illinois agriculture will be highlighted throughout the day while livestock and food auctions take place.

For other farm shows in your area and across the United States be sure to check out the Farm Show Calendar.

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