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Minnesota roundup: State Fair to get upgrades, higher ticket prices; 2 more state news stories

The 2017 fair dates are Aug. 24-Labor Day, Sept. 4. (photo courtesy the Minnesota State Fair)

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn.—Visitors to this year's Great Minnesota Get-Together will see major grounds upgrades. That's the good news. The bad news: Ticket prices are going up $1.

The Minnesota State Fair's board of managers on Sunday approved $8 million for upgrades, including $4.6 million in capital work and $3.4 million in maintenance projects, according to a news release.

Improvements will include "The Veranda," a new shopping and dining area occupying a portion of the Upper Grandstand's interior retail space, a new elevator at the west side of the historic grandstand, major upgrades to the Swine Barn, two new information booth, a new performance space outside the Education Building and renovations to the interior of the Creative Activities Building

All projects are funded through State Fair operating revenue and grants from the State Fair Foundation. The fair is financially self-supporting and receives no government aid.

The State Fair board also approved higher admission prices for the 2017 fair, which will run Aug. 24 through Labor Day, Sept. 4.

Admission for those ages 13 to 64 will be $14; children 5 to 12 and seniors 65 and older will be admitted for $11; kids younger than 5 are admitted free. Advance discount tickets for all ages are $11.

The approved admission fees represent a $1 increase in each category.

Man found dead in rural Motley home fire

MOTLEY, Minn. — A man has been found dead inside a residence in Motley in northcentral Minnesota that was lost to fire.

The Cass County Sheriff's Office received a report of a house fire at 6:42 a.m. Friday off Minnesota Highway 64 in rural Motley about 22 miles west of Brainerd.

Responders arrived and found a trailer house fully engulfed in fire. Efforts to extinguish the fire were immediately underway.

The man was found inside the residence, the sheriff's office reported. An autopsy is scheduled with the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's Office.

The victim's name is being withheld pending notification of family members.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation with the assistance of the Minnesota State Fire Marshal's Office.

Motley Fire and Rescue, Staples Fire and Staples Ambulance were on scene.

Fargo boy injured in Becker County snowmobile accident

ROUND LAKE TOWNSHIP, MINN.—A 12-year-old Fargo boy was injured in a snowmobile accident here on Saturday, Jan. 14.

According to a release from the Becker County Sheriff's Office, the accident happened around 2:18 p.m. The boy was driving a snowmobile near Ice Cracking Lake when his snowmobile left the trail and hit a tree. The boy's father was with him at the time of the accident, driving a separate snowmobile.

The boy, who was not identified by name in the release, was airlifted to a Fargo hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The incident is still under investigation by the Becker County Sheriff's Office.

Ice Cracking Lake is about 30 miles northeast of Detroit Lakes.

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