FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (WCCO) — Aside from hosting the big shows, the Grand Stand at the Minnesota State Fair hosts dozens of entrepreneurs.
From crafts to inventions, it’s a popular place. Few know the drill better than the family behind this stand.
Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield introduces us to a family who’s returned to their booth for eight decades. One of the great things about the State Fair is the tradition, and this family epitomizes that. In fact, they got the fair’s one and only Family Legacy award on Tuesday.
Among the loud bustle of the State Fair, Billy Newcomb’s voice resonates.
“I get my crowd laughing as you’re about to see,” Newcomb said.
A man of his word, that Billy is.
“Eat garlic at night, you’ll sleep like a baby. You know why? You’re going to sleep alone,” he joked.
He’s been behind the mic demoing for three decades, but that’s only part of the history.
“It’s a deep heritage with us. We’ve been here 83 years,” Newcomb said.
His beloved father, who has since passed away, started in the 1930s selling a canning tool. This is Billy’s sister making a sale. Now he shows off this hand-powered slicer and dicer.
“I’ve been buying from them for 30 years, the product he sells is just fabulous,” one fair-goer said.
That’s not all the Newcomb family has to offer. His brother is showcasing a hand drill-powered tiller.
His sister, showing off the new watermelon knife, with four generations involved. Billy says he sells in 12 days what his retail store sells in five years – and they have fun doing it – a sight he wishes the man who started it all could see.
“You think he’d be proud? Absolutely, he’d really be proud with this family legacy award,” Newcomb said.
The family got the award Tuesday, and only one family a year gets it. And as you saw it brings the family together for 12 long 12-hour days of work. The hand-powered food cutter is at the grand stand, and the watermelon slicer is in the West End.