It’s Fair Week!
Deep fried bacon-battered chicken. On a stick. And it was very good. As was the funnel cake.
Dorothy and Peter Grant drove up and we went to the fair just after the gates opened on Saturday. The Fair Parade was just ending, so we didn’t have any lines to worry about, and parking was pretty good (we parked in the free lot). We started with fresh-made funnel cake, then I got the thing-on-a-stick. It was very hot, very flavorful, and not at all greasy.
Breakfast-dinner knocked out of the way, we wandered past the rodeo palace to the farthest of the animal barns. We looked at some of the horses waiting their turn at the rodeo, then wandered up to the 4-H barn.
First, we looked at the welding projects. There were some very impressive items, ranging from a decorated deer or bird feeder to a livestock duster*, to a spectacular work table/tool bench, to trailers, to a gate that looked like a mountain scene. The students were quite eager to talk about the projects, and demonstrated their features.
Then we wandered over to look at the livestock. The goat judging had ended, and it was time for the photos of the winners. One young lady almost had everything set, and the goat pretty much posed for the photo along with the people, when the goat decided it needed to move. Everyone not trying to get the photo done chuckled, because trying to get a goat to behave like a civilized creature? Not happening.
As the goats and lambs posed or were lined up to be loaded fro departure, pigs were coming in. The lambs… all had fancy coats, some with hoods. Many had leg-wraps as well, apparently to keep the little beasts clean. The coats and leg-wraps came in all sorts of colors and patterns, so you’d look over and see a lamb in a purple coat and hood with cheetah-print legwarmers on. I blinked a few times.
The pigs were about as cooperative as the goats, although larger. The handlers used pig ticklers, long, flexible plastic rods with bunches of strings or feathers on the end. The pig was aimed up the proper aisle, and the handler walked beside or behind the pig, brushing it with the feathery bit to encourage the pig to speed up or turn. One dark-colored pig absolutely refused to cooperate and stood there, then tried to go the wrong way. A black and pink striped pig moved along obediently, turned into “his” pen, and then as soon as the handler looked away to answer a question, did a 180 and continued up the aisle. Oops! Those not trying to steer the pigs chuckled.
Peter took a breather while Dorothy and I oogled the fancy chickens and two ducks. The ducks looked confused to be surrounded by chickens. The chickens ranged from Cochins, which look as if they have fur, to some with enormous tails, to Polish chickens with feathery “helmets” that hide their eyes, to “modern” chickens that look like velociraptors washed on hot and then put into the dryer on high. Apparently the modern chickens are bred just to be strange, not to produce much meat or many eggs.
After Dorothy and I chickened out *ducks flying produce and carp*, we started working our way back to the gate. Peter opted to leave early, so Dorothy and I looked at the Produce of Unusual Size, watched a milking demonstration, poked our heads into the combine simulator (she did. I’ve driven one before, so I declined,) and boggled at some of the needlework projects. Then we skimmed the painting, drawing, and photography displays, and cruised through the sales stuff.
On the way out, we ducked into the other commercial building. Here we found the German-roasted nuts, one of my weaknesses. We also found salsa mix (review tomorrow), Tupperware, and the Republicans. The (R) were selling Trump 2020 swag. Since the (D) were selling things at Ama-Con, it balances out.
I’m sorry that the ag trade show has been broken off of the fair and moved to December. I really miss looking at the big and small equipment displays, and watching the demonstrations of different farm and ranch tools and tech.
By the time we left around two, the line at the gate stretched out the gate, down to the street, and partly up the block. Lots of families with kids, and it was still two hours until the rides opened up. The pony rides, “bucking bulls,” and something that was basically hamster-balls on water for kids had opened, plus the first magic show and the seal (four-legged) shows were scheduled for three and four.
In sum, we ate too much fried stuff, walked around, bought things, and had a good time.
*It is a way to get animals to self-medicate for skin conditions. They push under the container of medicinal powder to get to a salt/mineral block, and the medicine gets rubbed on their shoulders and back.