A steer butter sculpture, a Taylor Swift exhibit and an extra football game will be among the new highlights at the State Fair of Texas for 2016. The fair runs Sept. 30 to Oct. 23 in Fair Park. Here's a rundown:
Steer butter sculpture
This time around, it's a Real Frickin' Deal. No, really, the inspiration for this year's giant butter sculpture is Real Frickin' Deal (a.k.a. RFD), the Grand Champion Steer from the 2015 Youth Livestock Auction.
There's a new artist behind the buttery goodness, Dallas painter and sculptor Ken Robison (his work around the fairgrounds includes the Midway Arches, the Lone Star Boulevard Archways, the Ranch sign and more). To sculpt RFD, Robison will spend many a frosty hour in a case in the Creative Arts Building.
'The Taylor Swift Experience'
If you know all the words to "Shake It Off" and "Blank Space," this might just be for you. Check out instruments, costumes and tour photos. Keep an eye out for the light-blue gown she wore at the ACM Awards in Arlington and the beaded dress from the 2014 American Music Awards.
The Air Force Academy will take on the University of New Mexico on Oct. 15 at the Cotton Bowl. That's in addition to the usual OU-Texas and Grambling-Prairie View matchups.
The Clydesdales are back
The majestic Budweiser Clydesdales will take residency at the Budweiser Clydesdales Stable Display at the Chevrolet Park Plaza throughout the fair. This will be the animals' first State Fair appearance since 2005. At the stable, attendees will be able to see the Clydesdales in all their 12-foot glory and learn about the horses.
The Lords of Gravity Basketball Slam Dunk Show from Hungary, the Xpogo pogo stunt duo and the Lone Star Stampede are among the new attractions. Those first two are pretty self-explanatory, but the third showcases sharpshooters, American Indian dancers and a longhorn cattle drive.
Outside the Coliseum, look for Trio on the Green, which will serve appetizers and and drinks in threes. That could mean anything from wine flights to sliders. Near the Hall of State, Fiesta Grande will offer Mexican and domestic beer, as well as snacks.
A trio of historical exhibits will focus on the Lone Star State, including "Six Nations Over Texas," "Ways of the West" and "Vaquero: Genesis of the Texas Cowboy." The overall theme is Celebrating Texas Agriculture, and related attractions include a new "I Spy Texas" exhibit focused on agriculture and natural resources, a new Livestock 101 stage with daily presentations and guided livestock tours.
Tiney Ricciardi contributed to this report.