Many State Fair deals that scream savings are really only "fair" discounts, but how about 50 percent off or more? Angie's List (www.angieslist.com) rates local service providers such as painters, electricians, roofers and plumbers on a scale from A to F. An annual subscription normally ranges from $31 to $72 with specials, but during the State Fair a one-year subscription (new or renewal) is only $20 (also includes rating of doctors, clinics and hospitals). The rate gets even better for multi-year subs. Two years are $38 and three years $56. The Angie's List booth is in the lower level of the grandstand in the northwest quadrant next to the Minnesota History Center.Got milk (for $5 a gallon)?
Some market reports have recently speculated that the price of milk could hit $5 a gallon in September, as I wrote in a recent blog post. That's a bit alarmist since most experts are predicting an increase of less than 10 percent on an average price of $3.50. Regardless, here are some tips to save. Readers suggest that heavy drinkers and bargain hunters try Kwik Trip (www.kwiktrip.com). The convenience stores with locations mostly in the suburbs sell a half-gallon bag with its own holder for about $1.20, which is slightly less than warehouse clubs and Wal-Mart. Families buying 8 gallons a milk a week should search for a retailer with milk as a loss leader or buy the store brand. For more savings try the old trick of buying powdered milk. Mix half reconstituted and half regular milk to improve taste.
Infrequent milk drinkers who find milk going sour can try freezing a portion or adding a few grains of salt to delay the souring, according to Stretcher.com. Soy, rice and almond milks are more expensive but have a longer shelf life than cow's milk.Bag sale at Steeple People
Want to avoid the crowds looking for storewide bargains at Goodwill, Savers, Unique and Value Village on Labor Day? Try Steeple People Thrift (2004 Lyndale Av. S., Mpls., 612-871-8305) for its semiannual bag sale Monday through Sept. 3. Fit as many clothes, shoes and purses as you can into a grocery bag (supplied by SP) and pay only $10 per bag Monday and Tuesday. The price falls to $5 Wed. and Sept. 1, $3 on Sept. 2 and $1 on Sept. 3. After 3 p.m. Sept. 3, bags are free. Fall/winter merchandise hits the sales floor on Sept. 6.