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Popcorn is Illinois' New State Snack

By AP/KWMU

Springfield, ILL. – Illinois now also has an official state snack. Governor Rod Blagojevich signed legislation Monday that gives popcorn that designation. Illinois is one of the top popcorn-growing states in the nation.

The governor says he hopes it encourages more people to eat popcorn. The move to name popcorn the official state snack started as a class project for students at an elementary school in Joliet, a suburb of Chicago.

The students got lawmakers to back the idea, and now popcorn has joined the cardinal and the bluegill as official state symbols.

Popcorn got the recognition over Beer Nuts and other snacks made in Illinois, but the rivals say they have no hard feelings.

While Illinois is one of the top popcorn-growing states in the nation, the crop is only a tiny fraction of all the corn produced in Illinois.

Other Illinois State Symbols:
State Bird - Cardinal
State Insect - Monarch Butterfly
State Mineral - fluorite
State Slogan - "Land of Lincoln"
State Song - "Illinois", words written by C. H. Chamberlain and music composed by Archibald Johnston
State Tree - white oak
State Flower - native violet
State Animal - white-tailed deer
State Fish - Bluegill
State Prairie Grass - Big Bluestem
State Fossil - Tully Monster
State Folk Dance - Square Dance
State Soil - Drummer silty clay loam

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