Monday, August 23, 2010

State Fair! A tale of judging and fun fair activities - Part 1

Last Monday, I traveled to West Virginia for the first time EVER. It's not that far from where we live so I imagine we'll be visiting for future festivals and events (there's a Chocolate Festival in April; that's right, I said CHOCOLATE Festival). 

My primary reason for going was to judge two craft categories at the State Fair. The other reason for going was to experience fun state fair things like animal shows, horse races, competing vegetables and baked goods, deep fried everything, games and rides, a mechanical bull (oh yeah, I didn't do that), and cotton candy. 

Judging wasn't until Tuesday morning so on Monday afternoon my fellow judge AW and I just walked around and checked things out. We got dinner and browsed through some of the merchandise booths including our friends' father's booth, artist Robert Tuckwiller. Then, it was time to try one of the cinnamon rolls I've been hearing so much about. The line was looooong.
But we waited...
 And waited...
And waited. We watched the guy making them through the window when we got closer.

We finally got one. You might want to sit down for this (I'll wait)...and prepare to drool.

We went to the game/ride area of the fair and played a game called Fat Albert in which you bet a quarter on a particular color. My fair-loving friends AT and GT had told me all about it several times. GT even made a Fat Albert quilt for the fair last year (it even had snap on quarters). Here's the deal. There is a horizontal spinning wheel with color wedges painted on its surface. Each color has a hole at the perimeter of the wheel and under each hole is a tin cup with a handle. And there's an albino rat. Yes, an albino rat. The guy running the game places a tin cup containing the rat in the center of the wheel and rings a bell while spinning the wheel. The rat (probably very dizzy at this point) leaps out of the cup and dives down one of the holes. If your betting color matches the color the rat "chooses," you win a token! If one rat is getting tired, he gets benched and replaced with a second string rat. Here's a picture of the wheel:
AT loves this game and renounced our friendship when I won 5 tokens in 15 minutes; she had only scored 2 in 4 days. She told everyone we saw, including a reporter for the local paper. Which is why all four of us were mentioned in an article the Register Herald.

We also played the Dime Toss, which consists of spinning wheels stacked with drinking glasses. The objective is to land a dime in a glass of your choice, thus winning you the glass. AT won two short blue glasses for me. I tossed my share of dimes, but didn't win anything, once again confirming that I do not excel at throwing sports/games.

Next Post: Judging and lots of pictures...

Leaf out. 


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