* My Crain’s editor said he’d read a Chicago newspaper article about Governor’s Day at the Illinois State Fair and complained that it lacked “color.” So, I was asked to use lots of color in my column…
The Illinois State Fair’s “Director’s Lawn” is a tree-lined venue far from the corn dogs, grandstand concerts and beer tents.
The lawn spreads out in front of a rather dingy house used by the state’s director of agriculture, off a road marred by potholes and best accessed via a special gate that often is closed during the fair because there’s so little public parking. A million or so people attend the fair each year.
The grass on the lawn is trampled flat. But no events ever are as crowded as the annual Governor’s Day and the accompanying rally for the party out of power.
Even in this era of high-tech campaigns, the twin events unofficially kick off the governor’s race… Politicians high and low attend. The more important ones give speeches, the less important mill about and try to interest others in shaking their hands. Every major media outlet sends reporters.
There usually are four crowds. There’s the…
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