It is hard to believe that it is once again time for all the county/state fairs to be taking place. The Waseca Fair has already been held, and as I am writing this the Freeborn County Fair is taking place. Then comes the Mower County Fair, Steele County, the Minnesota State Fair, and then summer is over.
Is it fair to say that many people go to the fair for the food? Fair food just tastes different than what moms put on the table. I do know fair pronto pups have a flavor I can’t seem to get when I buy them from the market.
The smell of pronto pups frying seems me to tell that I must have one before I leave, but there are new food items that keep coming out. Some simple and some not-so-simple things are added to the old delicious things that make them more tempting and tasteful, so we indulge.
I never did get interested in going on the rides beyond the merry go round. I guess I wasn’t a thrill seeker, though I remember viewing the fair from the top of the Ferris Wheel for longer than I liked once when it broke down and left us stranded for a time.
Do they still have the side shows and oversized women, slippery snakes, etc. and tragic misinformed people who probably made a living being different? How humiliating to have to turn a handicap into a living!
I believe most skill booths were planned so few people would win unless they were a champion pitcher or basketball player and also knew how to turn the trick into prizes. Neil Pence, who grew up in the Geneva area, was good at those type of events and made a point of bringing home a large share of stuffed animals. He saved them to give to kids less fortunate when he went on mission trips.
Often if the pitcher or basketball shooter was too good, the prizes were often downsized or the lucky winner was asked to quit. Carnival people seem to enjoy traveling from one place to another. Now they travel in some home-like trailers compared to those early years.
How well I remember all the things we used to take to the fair, from flowers to furniture and a little in between, as my sister and I were in 4-H. I was a town girl and never took any animals, but I remember putting together our Bath 4-H Club booth each year.
Of course I was always interested in the kiddie barn, but the women’s building and the arts and crafts entries always drew my attention.
I have memories and pictures of when I was little in the kiddie parade, and when older, twirling my baton for the entertainment/talent shows.
When fair time comes around, my mother still talks about the gab sessions she used to have in the livestock pavilion as she waited between showing her animals.
Dressing the animals for show was always a big task. The animals had to have clean feet and noses, etc., and they and the exhibitor had to have good posture. It was quite fashionable back them to wear all white shirts and pants, which they had to try and keep clean until they were done showing their animals for the judges.
Too often this year my mother has recognized some of the names of old competitive cattle exhibitors whose showmanship days are past. It is something we would like to have go on forever. It is kind of a shock, like it can’t be possible, to see some of these things end. Thankfully, some of the memories of those good old days return and make people smile.
When I see some of the programs on television which have dancers, talented actors and singers, it also brings back memories. I think we’d find them basking in today’s world.
Going to the fair is like winning a purple ribbon seeing all the friends you always saw or competed against.
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Birthdays and anniversaries:
• Thursday, August 10th: Jovey Kathleen Knudson, Lynn Arends, Linda Weckwerth, Teresa Wright, Jeff Olson, Lydia Large, Vernon Cornelius, Michelle Brandt, Richelle Butler Chapman, Melisssa Cornelius Large, Dustin Dobberstein, Thayne Nordland, Ross & Kathie Lein, Steve & Kathy Nelson, Darrin & Linda Stadheim
• Friday, August 11th: Nicole & Daniel Burns, 2012; Nicole & Dallas Loken, Brian Broulik, Vicki Humburg, Jeremy Kaiser, Mike Plunkett, Kris Simon Freitas, Sharon Sorenson, Kim Anderson Schneider, Brian Thostenson, Irvin Jensen Jr., Kevin Avery, Luke Clark Wangsness, Paige Sophia Kromminga
• Saturday, August 12th: Linda & LaVerne Stieglbauer, Shawna Robertson, Tessa Christensen, Kristine Schroeder, Cindy Oswald, Cindy Nelson, Cynthia Crabtree, Thomas Smith, Ross Swearingen, Genie Hanson, Amy Tasker
• Sunday, August 13th: Dennis Deml, Tim Enzenauer, David Haddy, Bob Brandt, Lisa Dummer, Megan Dummer, Janet Hope, Kellie Petranek, Sylvia Jepson, Saxton Chad Ritz
• Monday, August 14th: Lucille Nechanicky, Gretchen Oswald Thompson, Peter Kasper, Leah Berg, Mark Sorenson, Gretchen Cassen, Alison & Chad Muilenburg and David & Carrie Paulson
• Tuesday, August 15th: Roger Wayne, Obert Osmundson, Kaye Dee Hanson, Nancy Nelson, Stephanie Peterson, Rhonda Shelton, Cade Shelton, Brian Warnke, Dorrie Horan, Michael Suelter, Kellie Benning, Maverick Harold Knutson, Larry & Kathleen Jensen, Rachel & Kyle Ladie
• Wednesday, August 16th: Mary Lerberg, Kaven Dean VanHal, Haley Deml, Alexander James Dufresne, Shayla Ann Marie Pachoel, Julie Arnold, Wayne & Marie Dobberstein, Harold & Janice Jensen, Mark & Diane Sundwall, Jeff & Julie Schlei and Donny & Gail Turvold
• Thursday, August 17th: Cole Brody Thompson, Dillon Matthew Kubiatowicz, Katie Klemmensen, Julie Osmundson, Luke Wiersma, Carol Nelson, Abbey Beaber, Jackie DeVrient, Sonya Peterson, Cheryl Spurr, Steve Ladlie, Daniel Whelan, Rod & Cheryl Thompson, Tira & James Smith and Tina & Todd Wangen, Justin & Brittany Stieglbauer
• Friday, August 18th: Rick Johnson, Ron Johnson, John Ross Vermedahl, David Klocek, Michael Ingvaldson, Kelly Schmidt, Janning, Connie Robertson, David Rietsema, Gary & Kathy Anderson, Ryan & Jill Hanson, Tamara & David Jepson
• Saturday, Ajugust 19th: Daxter Lee, Jason Langlie, Jodi Wayne, Michelle Peterson, Jennifer Popiel, Cheri Krecji, Ruth Enzenauer, Cynthia Grubish, Lois Johnson Aitchison, David Cooper, Alyssa Kay Jensen, Cheryl Dwight, Larry & Karen Carlson, Jackie & Travis Olson, Andy & Julie Arnold, Larry & Mary Ellen Walton, Kayla & Patrick Krause
May your day be filled with everything you enjoy most.
There are times I made mistakes regarding birthdays and anniversaries because of information I don’t know. Please look at it as a reminder that though they may no longer be with us it is nice to remember they once were and celebrate their birthdays and anniversaries.