I see your 500-pound Butter Cow and raise you a 2,000-pound cheese sculpture

The Indiana State Fair's new cheese sculpture is a delight to behold.

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Cheese sculpture sculpted to look like Indiana State Fair Dairy Bar
Photo: American Dairy Association Indiana

You never forget your first love. Mine was the Illinois State Fair Butter Cow, which I wrote about earlier this month. The 500-pound cow sculpted entirely out of butter is a 100-year tradition at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, and it enchanted me with its pastoral theme and elegant curves. But now, I am a woman. I’ve set childish things aside, and I have a new love: the 2,000-pound cheese sculpture at the Indiana State Fair.

Titled “Celebrating the Hoosier Spirit,” the sculpture contains nearly 2,000 pounds of Indiana cheese donated by a nearby dairy. Agriculture publication Agrinews reports that the sculpture weighs 1,960 pounds, to be exact, which includes 1,280 pounds of yellow cheddar, 640 pounds of white cheddar, and 40 pounds of other assorted varieties.

It was sculpted by Sarah Kaufmann, also known as “The Cheese Lady,” who drew inspiration from the Indiana State Fair’s iconic Dairy Bar. There, guests can score milky treasures including deep-fried cheesecake bites, signature macaroni and cheese, and something called a Buttermilk Wafflewich that consists of “two buttermilk waffles grilled to perfection with ooey gooey cheddar and American cheese inside.” (Happy National Waffle Day indeed.) Look a little closer at the cheese sculpture and you’ll see an assortment of dairy dishes, including a large grilled cheese hoisted by a smiling Cheese Man.


Why must I doff my Butter Cow in favor of the cheese sculpture? Why can’t I love both at the same time? Frankly, I don’t think I have room in my heart. The cheese sculpture is also clearly superior to the Butter Cow in terms of sheer heft, as well as attention to detail. If you’d like to lay eyes on this stunning piece of cheese art, the sculpture can be found at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in the Purdue Extension Agriculture/Horticulture Building. Agrinews reports that the cheese sculpture will be “converted to green energy” when the fair ends. Ah, summer love.