Illinois State Fair: From Democrats to wine to pumpkin pie - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Illinois State Fair: From Democrats to wine to pumpkin pie

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

It was a day for Democrats at the Illinois State Fair, and FOX 32's Mike Flannery also went hunting for something to drink and eat.

Illinois now has more than 100 wineries. Many of the best offer their wares for tasting at the State Fair.

“Actually, even growing up here in Illinois, I never knew about (an Illinois wine),” said Lincoln resident Luise Balfanz.

“We've been working hard for 20 years to get the word out (about Illinois wine),” said Bruce Morgenstern, owner of Pheasant Hollow Winery.

That work's lead to Illinois now having two nationally recognized American Viticultural Areas -- Shawnee Hills in Southern Illinois and the Upper Mississippi River Valley in the State's Northwest corner.

As for the Democrats, they gathered for Governor's Day in another corner of the Fairgrounds. Republicans mocked Pat Quinn's re-election campaign with two costumed characters nearby, as Democrats unveiled a cartoon-like figure of their own -- lampooning GOP nominee Bruce Rauner's wealth.

“Are we gonna let some billionaire slash education spending? No,” exclaimed Gov. Quinn.

State Senator Christine Radogno shared his thoughts on if Rauner is too rich to be governor.

“I don't think that's an issue. The Democrats want to talk about anything but their record running this state for 13 years,” Radogno said.

While politicians debated fat in government, the State Fair always features plenty of old-fashioned fat; such as the iconic cow sculptured out of huge amounts of butter, to this year's hot new sensation, deep-fried pumpkin pie.

“Hmm. Tastes like deep-fried Thanksgiving,” exclaimed LaSalle resident Chief Savage while laughing.

Republicans will have their day Thursday. Illinois' troubled economy is sure to be front and center. They'll gather a few minutes after Gov. Quinn reveals the State's latest unemployment numbers.

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