The coming of fall means that all across the nation agricultural fairs will be in progress. Fairs may be small like my first one in the tiny town of Middlefield, Massachusetts, or huge like the Los Angeles County Fair, but all have certain characteristics that make them fun, interesting, and educational. This year, as in several years past, I attended the Dixie Classic Fair in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, a medium sized fair and full of all the ingredients of a traditional county fair. If there is a fair anywhere near you, make a family trip there and join the fun. Plan to spend the day because there is something for everyone. Here’s a sampling of what you might find.
For the plant lovers there are lots of competitions for the best flower. Roses are very popular and the competition among rose growers is keen. Many different growers submit many different specimens and the result is mind-boggling.
For those with an artistic flare there are competitions for flower arrangements according to a theme. One of the themes was ‘Harmonious Unity” and this stunning arrangement took the top honor.
The fruit and vegetable displays were amazing! just look at these gorgeous apples.
The vegetables were abundant: a basket of okra,
red, green, and yellow sweet peppers,
and three perfectly matched butternut squash.
How about a watermelon weight 193.12 lbs.?
Or a pumpkin weighing 1,257.8 lbs. Just .2 lb below the record for the North Carolina?
Perhaps the gourd with the longest handle tickles your fancy.
On the other hand, perhaps the you might get inspiration from the ones put to various uses.
Potato decoration was also very popular.
Maybe a basket of vegetables beautifully displayed will inspire you.
Here are two that I would never have even thought about:
The best hay.
the biggest sunflower head.
A huge number of people entered their backed goods and pickles into competition and all were put in cupboards (to keep people from sampling them?)
Handicraft was not wanting; the quilts were magnificent.
The most incredibly delicate handmade item I saw was this tiny pair of tatted shoes.
What would a fair be like without animals?
The sheep were all shaved for their debut.
The pig handling competition was a riot. The handlers remained cool even though the pigs were totally unpredictable, raucous, and hilarious.
For petting, there was a petting farm and a rabbit display where the exhibitors were encouraging passersby to pet their furry friends.
If all these wonderful treats have not grabbed your attention be assured that there are all kinds of entertainment going on such as: bands of all sorts, hypnotist, demonstration of sculpting with a chain saw, wine tasting, demolition derby, tractor drawing, rodeo, and numerous rides including an old fashioned looking carousel.
Food abounds, especially the really tasty kinds that go right to the arteries and/or hips. But, heck, the fair only comes once a year so enjoy!