Well, its that time of year again. The time of year when the center of the county moves from Elizabethtown of Lake Placid and heads to Westport for five days of fun and entertainment.
It’s fair time.
As like in other years, I always look on this week fondly. It brings up some of the best memories of youth, and also some of the best memories of adulthood as I have watched my kids run around, jump on rides, take part in events and grow up having that same love for the fair that my parents instilled in me as a child.
As I was up in the fair office the other day, I was saying that there were two things that I missed from my youth at the fair: the couch in the former fair office where I took many a nap and the cooler where I took many a Mountain Dew.
In coming up with this year’s all things fair column, I have decided to list what I believe are some of the ky not-miss events (and other stuff) that will be at the 164th edition of the fair:
• Baconburgers: the annual stand by the Kiwanis Club of Elizabethtown is always a favorite stop. Could I make them at home - sure. Would it be the same - not a chance.
• Anything that has the word “contest” in it: That word can be preceded by milking, pudding eating, whatever, its always fun to see someone with a face full of food or trying to figure out why there’s no milk coming out when they squeeze.
• Duffer Borden Fair Collection: If you did not get the chance to see the collection of trinkets and memorabilia that was displayed by his widow, Bertha, then you missed out. The collection is near priceless, with miniature rides and figures that all wrap around the fair, something that Duffer was very passionate about throughout his life.
• Fried dough: Please excuse the return to food, especially when I am trying to get in better shape (another column for another day) but, we’re talking the once in a year chance to get your mitts on warm, yummy fried dough. I can taste it now (or, the aftertaste of Clinton County).
• Demolition Derby: The annual crash-em-up, smash-em-up that is the biggest day of the fair happens Saturday, Aug. 11. Come out and cheer on you favorite automotive gladiator or jeer the one who takes him out.
• Jeff Boyer: So the kids are out of school, but with the show that this man puts on, they may actually learn something while they are trying to rest their brains. Boyer puts on a show that is about science with the use of bubbles and other materials. It’s fun to watch.
• Pig races: Their pigs, and their racing. Who needs Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps...
• Hello, I’m not Johnny Cash, but I sure sound like him: I have to admit, I was very surprised with how successful the Tim McGraw impersonator was last year (even though his sound guy lives by the creed, “but these go to 11”). This year, Terry Lee Goffee will take to the stage, performing the songs of Johnny Cash. While I admire his old stuff (and have actually been to Folsom Prison - the just visiting outside portion, that is), this show will not be complete unless he belts out Cash’s new classic, “Hurt.”
• Exhibits: Whether its what the members of 4-H have done over the past year or what has come from your neighbors garden in Floral Hall, there are plenty of things to see at the fair while the younger generation takes to the rides.
There is so much more, and I hope you take some of these suggestions into consideration. Remember, though, this is from someone who has been going to the fair since August of 1976 and knows where almost everything is with a blindfold on.
The key is to discover (or re-discover) the fair for yourself.
Keith Lobdell is the editor of the Valley News. Contact him at email@example.com.