- Associated Press - Friday, August 1, 2014

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A trip to the Illinois State Fair this year could earn you a record contract.

The television talent-search program “American Idol” will have open auditions Aug. 8th and 9th. They’ll be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. near the entrance to the carnival midway.

Fair manager Amy Bliefnick (BLEEF’-nik) says that’s one reason she hopes the annual agricultural extravaganza will draw more people. The (Springfield) State Journal-Register is sponsoring a “Golden Abe” award for food vendors offering new and creative culinary delicacies.

Livestock remains the fair’s cornerstone. Larry Moffett - whose family cattle-breeding operation is southwest of Decatur - is singled out this year after 60 consecutive years of showing cattle at the fair.

Grandstand acts include Robin Thicke, Jake Owen, Pitbull and Steely Dan.

___

Online: http://www.agr.state.il.us/isf/