SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Take a look at this year’s Illinois State Fair butter cow!
This year’s sculpture features a cow grazing on a sunflower while its farmer tends to another sunflower. Artist Sarah Pratt has spent over sculpting the cow from over 800 pounds of butter.
The butter cow is always matching the theme of the fair. This year’s theme is “Grow With Us.”
“Our family just moved to a home with acreage and started growing our own garden,” Pratt said. “Through that experience, I was inspired to include a farmer growing on the land that in turns allows the cow to grow.”
According to fair officials, the butter cow has been a staple of the fair for 101 years.
“For a lot of families, it is not a trip to the Illinois State Fair unless they see the iconic butter cow,” Jerry Costello II, director of Illinois’ Department of Agriculture, said.
The butter cow’s significance is to highlight the contributions dairy farmers give to the state economy. Over 117,000 Illinoisans are employed by the dairy industry.
“We can say that our growers, farmers, and producers are really the bread and butter of Illinois,” Lieutenant Governor Julianna Stratton said.
The sculpture will be on display in the Dairy Building for the whole fair. You can see it online via webcam.