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State Fair starts today in West Allis

The 157th annual Wisconsin State Fair begins today in West Allis.

Fair officials and vendors are hoping for a strong turnout despite the economic downturn and declining attendance at other festivals so far this summer.

Dave Schmidt of the Wisconsin Bakers Association says gas prices have gone down a bit, and his group plans to sell a whole lot of the fair's signature cream puffs.

Last year, 365,000 were sold, and Schmidt expects more sales this year in spite of a 50 cent price increase. Those cream puffs are now $3.50 apiece.

A fair wouldn't be a fair without animals. The largest junior dairy show in the world begins this morning.

More than 750 youngsters from 45 countries will bring in about 900 dairy animals.

The show is so big the fair moved its open class beef event to the fair's second weekend.

The State Fair runs through Aug. 10.