Florida State Fair kicks off

- The rides are running, the cotton candy is fluffing, and the livestock are rarin' to go: The 2016 Florida State Fair opened for business on Thursday.

Fairgoers will find everything they expect at this year's event -- even rain, per the unofficial first-day tradition.  But the gray skies did not stop state Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam from throwing the switch to light the midway this morning.

New this year is the people's choice burger -- Floridians were given the chance to help pick the featured hamburger, and they chose something called the "Bacon Bomb Explosion Burger."

"The winning burger features fresh ground chuck, with ranch, BBQ sauce and a special seasoning," a fair press release explained.  "After the addition of some bacon crumbles, the meat is wrapped in a lattice of fresh bacon and slow roasted with hickory smoke until golden brown, then sliced into patties. This mouthful of a burger is served on a Kaiser roll with a slice of cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, pickles and, for the adventurous, a few more strips of bacon."

The Florida State Fair runs through February 15.

LINK: Schedule, ticket information, and live Midway cam

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