By Jason DeRusha

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Hundreds of thousands of people have visited the Minnesota State Fair already, and they’re sending many, many Good Questions to WCCO-TV.

Why aren’t the millions of MN State Fair logo cups recyclable? – Michael from Minneapolis

According to the fair, it’s because they want to have one type of cup for the entire fair.

“The fair supplies a quality cup that keeps cold beverages cold and hot beverages hot without the need for a hot beverage collar as most coffee shops have to use,” said Brienna Schuette, fair spokesperson.

The cup is made of laminated polystyrene. If they had several different cups, it would present a challenge to supplying cups at all times for the different vendors.

The good news: “None of the solid waste from the fair, including cups, goes to landfills and the cups in particular are taken to a local incinerator to be used as part of a waste to energy system,” she said.

Which fair vendor has been operating the longest? – Dan from New London

Hamline United Methodist Dining Hall on Dan Patch Ave. is the oldest vendor. It’s celebrating 114 years at the fair.

Hamline Dining Hall first started at the fair in 1897 by bringing sandwiches from the church in horse carts. It’s longest continually running food establishment on the fairgrounds. They have six plaques in commemorating workers who have given 50 years to the fair at this dining hall.

How many sticks does the fair go through every year? – Anne Hodson from Richfield

“We’ve never quantified it because it would probably take eons to determine, based on how many items at the fair use sticks,” said Schuette.

More than 60 types of food are served on a stick at the fair, and many giveaways and merchandise are on a stick.

The fair does know that.

“Between Pronto Pups, Poncho Dogs and corndogs sold at the fair, more than 575,000 sticks are used up annually,” according to Schuette.

Jason DeRusha