Monday, August 10, 2009

Fair Weekend

This was the Williamstown fair weekend. We went last year and enjoyed ourselves so we decided it would make a good afternoon break from chores to go again this year. Last year we arrived at opening time and found several vendors hadn't set up yet, so this year we tried getting there just after lunchtime. Unfortunately.

We arrived at the gates at 12:30 pm, paid our $8 each to get in and then spent1/2 hr in line to the directed parking. After parking we then had to walk 10 minutes back down the road to get into the fair proper. Once there we saw the requisite 4H cattle show, English Pony show, and the Western rodeo show all going on at the same time. Problem was there was no seating left and very little room close enough to the fences to actually see the shows.

So we decided to go look at the animal exhibits. Last year there was a tent full of show chickens, and a few ducks. Of course being new to the whole chicken addiction I really wanted to see the chicken exhibit. This year, there was no chickens. In fact, there was very little in the way of animal exhibits. The only goats, sheep, llamas, and geese were at the petting zoo, which was crowded. Little Ray's Reptile Zoo was doing a show but neither of us was interested in seeing that.

Ok, that was a bust, so we tried the craft vendors. Last year there was a young female blacksmith who was very friendly and more than willing to talk to people visiting her tent. This year it was a middle aged gentleman who did his level best to ignore everyone around him. When we got close enough, through the sulfur fumes coming off the fresh pile of coal he placed on the forge, to actually ask questions he stepped away from the forge and started drinking from a thermos. In fact he drank from the thermos for so long we decided to leave and find someone else's stuff to look at.

Most of the other vendors were selling classic flea market trash. Cheap China made belts and buckles, metallic 8 x 10 pictures of unicorns and the like. Even the furniture makers seemed to be selling the exact same stuff, or at least stuff made from the same pattern. The only vendor who had anything even remotely interesting was the Preserves vendor, and she had a lot of really interesting jams, jellys, and pickles. But, as PeterC said, we din't need any of that stuff until we eat what we already have put away.

We wandered our way through the midway and food vendors, where we bought some fresh mini-donuts, watched the price of a small 500ml bottle of water climb from $1.00 to $3.00 as it got hotter, and generally tried not to get run over by the crowds, or breath to much of the insane amount of cigarette smoke. In the end we found ourselves back at the cattle show and decided it was time to leave. We spent a grand total of an hour trying to enjoy ourselves and just getting more and more frustrated.

Next year we are getting there early. Then if we only stay an hour we at least don't have to wait so long to figure that out.

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