What’s Good at the Fair?

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal 31 Comments

kentucky-state-fair-jpg Have you ever been to a State Fair? In Kentucky, it’s a place where you can find almost anything. Music, rides, horse shows, cattle judging, rabbits and hens in cages, a rooster crowing contest, honey bees, shepherd dogs herding sheep, and more. Lots more. And tomorrow afternoon , you might find my husband and me at the at the Pride of Counties exhibit telling you all about our beautiful hometown in Anderson County, Kentucky.

We did this last year and had a great time talking to people from all over the state and some other states too. I’ll have some free bookmarks for any interested readers and you know I’ll enjoy talking about my books. After all, I did use my hometown as a model for the small town settings of Hollyhill and Hidden Springs in my stories.

What do you like about going to the fair? I used to like riding on the Ferris wheel and the Merry-Go-Round and even tried out a few roller coasters in my younger days. Then I enjoyed watching my kids have fun on the rides. Do you remember standing by those little rides that are cars, trains or whatever that went round and round? You put your very young kids on them and then stood and waved every time they made the little circle. Of course, as they got older, they started riding big kids rides and certainly weren’t excited about waving to their mother. LOL. As we kept adding on a few more years, I liked looked at the photography entries and such and my husband liked looking at the cows and pigs. We hardly peeked out at the carnival part after the kids grew up. Then, we didn’t go to the fair. Darrell said it was too much walking and I was always busy, busy trying to write another book. Or we’d say, sure we’ll go and then wouldn’t make the time to actually get in the car and go. One year we went with my grandson on a school field trip. That was fun. And then the Chamber of Commerce asked if I’d like to take a shift in the Pride of the Counties Anderson County booth last year. And that was fun too. So we’re back this year for another meet and greet session at the fair.

Fair-FoodBut if we have time, I might sneak out to one of those food booths and get a caramel apple with nuts or one of those lemonade shakeups that taste like lemon sugar. Or a corndog. I love corndogs at the fair.

One More Sunday Winner

Donna H was this Sunday’s winner. One more Sunday in my August Giveaway and to go out with a bang, I’m going to draw two winners. One winner will be from the names of all of you who have commented in August and one winner from those who comment on this week’s posts – tonight and Wednesday. I enjoyed reading what you had to say about butterflies and rain last week.

Some good questions for you this week.

Have you been to a fair?   Did you have a favorite carnival ride?   How about a favorite fair food?

Tell me all about it. I can’t wait to hear from you. Thanks for reading!

 

 

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Comments 31

  1. Annette Naish

    When I was a teenager, I was fortunate enough to be able to go to the Texas State Fair every evening after school. I loved it all, from the cows to the new cars. And being able to hear Big Tex talk was always fun. When my girls were little we got to go, but not every day. It has always been a fun time. And if you don’t do anything but find a perfect spot and watch people, it is one of the most entertaining places in the world.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      The people watching is interesting, Annette. We did some of that when we were at the fair Monday. One thing sure, people come in all shapes and sizes and any more with every color hair. I know you have great memories of your teenage days at the fair with your friends. Nothing like it.

  2. Nancy

    I used to go to the State Fair every fall, and it was so much fun! We would watch them setting up the rides a day before the opening, and get very excited.

    There was a scarecrow stuffing booth, where my daughters and I made a big scarecrow, then set him on our front porch. Guess who had to dispose of the straw-y body?
    I loved the rides, and having a mild fear of heights, riding the ferris wheel was extra thrilling, along with the rides that spun us around until we couldn’t walk straight! The animal exhibits were my favorites, though, and it fascinated me to see the varieties of chickens!
    It became tradition to buy and consume sausage dogs with peppers and onions, cotton candy, and fudge.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Sounds like you know how to have fun at the fair, Nancy. I’ll let you have those spinning rides though. I can do the Ferris wheel though. And there are many types of chickens. I remember the first time I saw one of those floppy-eared rabbits at the fair. I thought something was wrong there. LOL.

  3. Sandi Keaton-Wilson

    I have only been to a county fair. I’ve entered art work and won ribbons. My favorite fair food just might be funnel cakes!

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      Ann H Gabhart

      You’ve got a lot of company with those funnel cakes as favorite fair foods. Yum. The homemakers have been having a exhibition fair here that my sister enters in, but I never seem to have the energy or time to enter anything. I’m sure I’d like to look at the exhibits though.

  4. Maryann

    My now husband and I had our first date at the fair! He bought me a little leather bracelet which I still have and that is where he asked me to be his girlfriend! They had a whole chicken dinner at our local fair which we always enjoyed.

    My favorite fair food is the lemonade and french fries or roasted corn and then followed by a dessert of funnel cake with powdered sugar.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Romance and the fair can go together, can’t they, Maryann. I went on a date with my husband to the county fair once, but it didn’t go so well. He was so determined that he could knock over the milk bottle or whatever in one of those games that he let the barker talk him out of all his money. I tried to get him to stop, but he wanted to win one of those teddy bears. Not the best fair memory for us. But we’ve been plenty of other times when we had more fun. I’m still wishing I’d gotten one of those lemonades today. Love those things.

    2. Nancy

      Oh, aren’t husbands romantic sometimes? My husband won a giant pink bear, so big it had to sit on the floor in the corner, and my daughters used it as a chair! Hubby was so proud of himself that he deliberately walked around the fair for 45 minutes, showing off the bear as he propped it on his shoulders.

  5. Connie Lee

    We went to the county fair when I was in school, all the kids got a free ticket to get in. I loved riding the ferris wheel, but didn’t like anything that would turn you upside down, I don’t have the stomach for that.
    We live within a few hours of our state fair in Raleigh, NC and we do go there sometimes. I always get a hot dog and maybe an ice cream cone. I love the fair smells and the atmosphere!

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      Ann H Gabhart

      I like the Ferris wheel too, Connie, but I don’t do the hang upside down rides. My kids have ridden those kind of roller coasters, but not me. The fair is a different world, isn’t it?

  6. Carlton

    My family and I have been to the Kentucky State Fair twice, when our older son won a state storytelling contest and was invited to perform. We loved the animal exhibits, especially the rabbits. My favorite food was the Pineapple Whip, and I am craving one right now! My son ate a Krispy Kreme bacon cheeseburger and loved it, although the rest of us got queasy just watching him eat it.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      I can’t imagine that Krispy Kreme burger, Carlton. That would be enough to get you queasy, but boys have a different appetite level. I love storytelling. I didn’t know they had a storytelling contest at the fair. I might like to go on that day. To listen. Not to tell stories. I hope to go to the Cave Run Storytelling Festival in September.

  7. Karen Jones

    The Clinton County fair in Frankfort, IN held always in August. Out dad was in the army and only when he was in Korea in the early 50’s did we live there, but his parents did and every year in August he would take leave and we would drive in our 1949 Pontiac (all five of us!) to IN. The highlight of visiting, besides seeing grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins was an all day trip to the fair. Times were different and my cousins and I were allowed to attend the fair without a parent. Our cousins were in 4H and had animals to show so they even spent the night there. My favorite rides were the Ferris wheel and, of course, the merry-go-round. My least favorites were the octopus and the bullet! I got so sick on the octopus and lost my silver dollar on the bullet when the car turned upside down and my purse flew open. 😟 My favorite foods were the candy apples and the flat sticks of taffy that we would watch being pulled and then cut in strips. I haven’t seen that done in years! Maybe since then. Those were magical days that children today are not privileged to experience, I’m sorry to say. What wonderful memories!

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      Ann H Gabhart

      You’re right, Karen. We don’t turn our kids loose at places like that any more. But it was fun to just be told here’s some tickets go have fun on the rides. I was in 4-H but I never did the cow and that sort of project where I had to stay the night. I never thought it looked like much fun sleeping with the cows. LOL. That was sad you losing your silver dollar. You have to wonder who found it and how lucky they must have felt when they did. Great memories. Thanks for sharing them.

  8. Lucy Reynolds

    I have been to the fair in WV and WI. I love looking at the arts and crafts. I’m not much of a ride person, as they make me sick. I loved eating gyros with cucumber sauce and mouse ears. Mm mm …the food smells are heavenly.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Lucy, you and Karen both mention gyros. I’m going to have to look up those to see what they are. And mouse ears, hmm, that sounds very interesting. Not heard of it either. I’m no longer a carnival ride rider but I might enjoy watching the grandkids have fun on the rides.

  9. Karen G.

    I love going to the fair, but Hubby is not to thrilled about them. He’ll go just for me and each time we go he always says he had a good time. The county fair I go to is 10 minutes up the road and that is the one my parents always took us to when I lived in the city. I would love to go to my state fair which is in Syracuse, NY but it is in the other end of the state and too far to drive for the day. I have gone to the Big E in Massachusetts 3 times and really enjoyed that one. I’m not too thrilled about the rides but I love walking through the buildings looking at exhibits/animals, also eating fried dough, cotton candy, steamed clams, curly french fries, more fried dough, steak sandwich or gyro. No wonder I don’t feel too good when I get home. I’m getting too old for that, but I enjoy it!

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      Ann H Gabhart

      You do like to sample the goodies, Karen. I’m guessing the fried dough is what we call funnel cake down here. I bypassed all the goodies today, but I wanted one of those shake-up lemonades. I like looking at the exhibits too, but we didn’t look around much today. Just talked to people in the Anderson County booth until our alloted time was up and came on home.

  10. Linda D. McFarland

    I always enjoyed going to fairs when I was younger because of 4-H. I won some ribbons which was exciting. Haven’t been in years, never liked walking the mid-way having carnival workers yelling at you! Always liked cotton candy. Hope you have a great day, I’d drop by but PA is a little far!

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Oh, come on, Linda. It’s just a hop skip and jump. A long one. LOL. I never liked the carnival workers yelling at me either. But I liked the midway when I was a kid. I did 4-H too and sent some exhibits to the fair. Fun when you got a ribbon. Even better when there was a cash prize.

  11. Margaret Nelson

    It’s been a long time since I’ve gone to a state fair, but we try to go to our county fair every year. The first day is Seniors Day, so we get a reduced price to get in. There’s tri-tip lunch, and free ice cream sundaes! We’re not big on rides. I also like the deep-fried zucchini dipped in ranch dressing 🙂

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Those free ice cream sundaes would pull me in too, Margaret. Love a strawberry sundae. I used to like some of the rides, but about the only thing I’d consider riding now would be the Ferris wheel or merry-go-round. I used to love roller coasters as long as they didn’t go upside down. I didn’t trust those upside down loops. 🙂

  12. Paula

    We just had a local carnival down by the river. It was very small but I liked the tilt-a – whirl and a tiny roller coaster. . They had a Ferris wheel but I was too chicken. I don’t like heights. Mostly we walked around and did the throw the ball at the milk bottles ( wooden) or ring toss. . Or the fishing pond where you could win a goldfish ! We just ate cotton candy or popcorn and maybe a hotdog or ice cream cone.
    My sister had a carnival in our front yard one year. That was fun to try to pull off! Now she has her own marketing agency.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      I’m imagining the carnival in your front yard, Paula. Sounds fun. About the only game I could ever win anything at was the duck pond. No big prizes but something at least. Not sure I’d want to win a goldfish now. My kids won some at Fall Festivals when they were in elementary school. I got tired of cleaning the goldfish bowl. 🙂 Sounds like you had a fun carnival. Any chance to eat a little spun sugar in pink or blue.

  13. Lane Hill House

    Favorite country fairs ~ set up in the middle of a field with cars parked all around. Portable fence corrals for the 4H/FFA students with their ribbons posted. Love those. Watching the teens spray their horses to cool them down and fancy them up with braided tails. Barrel races.
    Looking for money/coins dropped on the ground in the midway/carnival area. The smell of caramel corn in the air, seeing the homemaker exhibit/judging tables. I liked the rotor barrel with the bottom falling with you plastered on the wall from centrifugal force. My favorite food ~ the fluffy air-filled pineapple whip cones.
    Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House ~ Oh, and most of all ~ walking with friends.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      Indeed, walking the midway and exhibits with friends has to be the best. And I’d forgotten caramel corn. Love that too. The fair is not a place to think diet. The 4-H and county fairs are fun. We used to have those here, but I think they discontinued them now. I’ve never seen the pineapple whip cones, but they sound yummy. I’ll pass on the rotor barrel. Somehow plastered to the wall doesn’t sound appealing to me. LOL.

  14. Judy

    That was me Friday. Placing my 4 year old on the rides and waving and being so proud of her bravery.

    The Pride of the Counties was my favorite part.

    I wanted to try the donut burger but chickened out. 😉

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      Ann H Gabhart

      The donut burger is right there with deep fried Derby Pie, Judy. Sounds deadly. But it is so fun taking a little one to the fair and watching them smiling and having fun. Too bad I didn’t pick last Friday to work the booth at the fair. We could have talked face to face.

  15. Sonja

    I grew up in California and every February we had the International Date Festival. It was essentially a county fair that became quite renowned. I loved marching in the parade and we dressed up in Arabian nights costumes because that was where the date palms were imported from many years back in time. They had a pageant, rides, and games and entries for cooking, farming (4h) and everything. I used to like the spook alley the best, wasn’t much for really rough rides, but the scrambler, as it was called back then, was one that I enjoyed a lot.

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      Ann H Gabhart

      That sounds like a blast, Sonja. The Arabian nights costumes had to be fun. And spook alley sounds like something that would draw people in, but I have to admit that I’ve always wondered why people like getting scared. I guess we like to imagine chills and thrills when we KNOW it’s not real. The same reason people like scary movies or read thriller novels. I could ride the scrambler when I was a kid, but now I’d have to have a barf bag. 🙂

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