Officials unveil 2023 State Fair butter cow

Officials unveil 2023 State Fair butter cow

Fair starts Thursday with the theme, ‘Harvest the fun’

Capitol News Illinois

SPRINGFIELD – With the 2023 Illinois State Fair about to get underway, Gov. JB Pritzker and Department of Agriculture Director Jerry Costello II officially unveiled this year’s butter cow.

The cow was sculpted by artist Sarah Pratt and inspired by dairy farmer Lorilee Schultz, from Mill-R-Mor Dairy in Orangeville, who is depicted harvesting milk from one of her cows. The theme of this year’s State Fair is “Harvest the Fun.”

This year’s display also features a second, smaller sculpture in a separate display case depicting Schultz’s daughter, Lucy, petting a calf.

“This year's butter cow sculpture celebrates the Illinois dairy farm families like mine who harvest the fun of dairy every day on our farms,” Schultz said at the unveiling ceremony. “What is more fun than ice cold milk, creamy ice cream and gooey cheese made with milk produced on over 400 dairy farms across the great state of Illinois?”

The sculpture will remain on display in the Dairy Building of the fairgrounds in Springfield for the duration of the fair, which runs Aug. 10-20. The sculpture is also viewable on the fair’s butter cow webcam.


Capitol News Illinois is a nonprofit, nonpartisan news service covering state government. It is distributed to hundreds of print and broadcast outlets statewide. It is funded primarily by the Illinois Press Foundation and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, along with major contributions from the Illinois Broadcasters Foundation and Southern Illinois Editorial Association.

Peter Hancock

Peter HancockPeter Hancock

Peter was one of the founding reporters with Capitol News Illinois. A native of the Kansas City area, he has degrees in political science and education from the University of Kansas.

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