Um, yeah, so a few weeks ago was fair week in our little town. You might dismiss that as no biggie, but around here? Fair week is t.h.e. week to plan your life around. More than 40,000 people attend the fair here which is saying quite a lot for our town of 2,000. Seriously. It’s a big deal, especially in a place where the rest of the year is pretty quiet. Since this is our first summer here, dozens of people told me that we would get caught up in the excitement of fair just like everyone else. Whatever! Or so I thought. I was sure we wouldn’t give in to the pressure to be at the fair every day. And we didn’t. We were there twice a day. At least. Especially because we were within walking distance. To say that we are already excited for 2014’s fair is an understatement and I hereby apologize to all those who knew me better than I knew myself.

The three eldest entered a baked good in the open class premium. Walker (7 years) won a blue ribbon and reserve champ for his made-from-scratch angel food cake (I won’t confess how many eggs he went through as he attempted to separate egg whites for the first time while making it; we ate scrambled eggs for breakfast the entire week). Jackson (9 years) won 2nd place for his double chocolate muffins and Cade (6 years) won a blue ribbon for his monster cookies. Oh, and they each won 2 bucks. Which they promptly spent on powerade and gum. Money burns a whole lot of holes in their pockets.

Of course there was the iconic parade. Elbows may or may not have been thrown in the race for candy.

roller coaster
Brian won the award for Best Dad Ever for riding the Fireball of Utter Death (not the actual name of the ride) with Walker who desperately wanted to go but was a bit scared to go alone.

The boys watched sheep shearing for the first time in the history of ever. Jackson wasn’t quite sure the sheep was down with it. I assured him all would be right in the world. City boys.

tractor pull
And of course the fair wouldn’t be complete without a little friendly tractor pull competition. It was harder than it looked! And we realized that clearly there were some competitors who had trained in the off season (er, either that or my boys were seriously lacking in the leg muscle department). Either way, they got a soda for their efforts which pretty much made their life.

Is the fair a big deal where you live?

If you’d like to check out past Snapshot Saturdays, click HERE.

22 Responses to Snapshot Saturday: Fair Week

  1. Cammee says:

    Way to go baking boys! I think I need to send your boys some Detroit Tigers hats. You are close enough to go to a game! JEALOUS!! Actually, I have no desire to go to Detroit so I’m headed to Boston in a couple weeks to watch them. I need to convert those boys! It makes more sense for them to be Tigers fans than it does for a middle aged woman in Utah!

  2. Rachel says:

    Fun! Yes, what IS it with boys absolutely NEEDING gum and Gatorade/Powerade? My kids can’t keep a dollar if their life depends on it.

  3. Jackie says:

    I also grew up in a small town and the fair was the place to be. Pretty much everyone I knew would enter something in the fair. My brothers and i raised 4H sheep and my best friend and i would always enter the dutch oven cooking contest. We looked forward to it all year long and I thought that was just how it was. I was shocked when I got married and my husband confessed to me that he had never been, nor ever even entertained the idea of going to a fair!

  4. Veronica says:

    I love that your oldest kids entered the baking competitions! Like mother like sons! 🙂 Next year YOU should enter. They have adult competitions right? Fair week is a pretty big deal here but it’s not in our city – it’s a state fair and is an hour away so I think it’s more of a big deal where it’s located than in the rest of KS.

  5. Emily says:

    Wait, so one of your boys is a Red Sox fan and one is a Tampa Bay fan? No wonder they can’t get along! 😉

    Are you planning to go down to the MN State Fair? Now, THAT is a big deal. But you could probably bypass Sweet Martha’s cookies since even better cookies grace your kitchen on a regular basis. 🙂

  6. Jen T says:

    I live in a small mid-west town, and our county fair is HUGE! We do all the same things. So fun! Welcome to life in the country!

  7. Ava says:

    Going to the Fair is practically required here in Iowa! The Iowa State Fair (the one the movie was based on) attracts over one million visitors every year in Des Moines! It is going on right now! Home to every food you can imagine, deep fried and put on a stick!! What fun!!

  8. Allyson says:

    Sounds SO fun! Made me reminisce about the “Ute Stampede” every July in the small town of Nephi, Utah where my mom grew up. I loved going to visit my grandma at that time and going to the Stampede … the parade, fun rides, rodeo, etc. My grandma has passed away and no more family live there, but just two years ago we had a family reunion there – specifically planned to be during the Stampede for old times’ sake! Glad you’re making fun family memories! Your kids will always remember it!

  9. Terry A. says:

    Oh, yes! Fairs are big in this part of the state, too. Our kids were all in 4-H, and we showed animals at the fair, so we pretty much lived there during fair week. I’m glad to hear you and your family had so much fun!

  10. Maggie says:

    We just went to a local fair in Ventura, near Los Angeles. Livestock, baking contests, pig racing, and a giant gauntlet of every fried food under the sun! My favorite thing this year was the deep fried girl scout cookie. SOO tasty! Still love the fried twinkie though, that’s a classic. We went on wristband ride day so I rode some scary rides, like the boat that seems like it’s about to go upside down while you pray it ends quickly, and some not so scary, like my favorite, the Tilt O Whirl! Bringing a couple of boys 9 and 6, one of which always seems to be wandering off into the crowd, makes me wonder how on earth you manage with yours! They must be very well behaved! 🙂

  11. rachael says:

    My husband and I love the rays and our going to see them play on our anniversary next week. So I have to say i love your sons hat and I wish our fair was that big here in Utah.

  12. shannon says:

    Like mother, like sons. So cool that you are passing your talent for cooking onto your children.

  13. Darcy says:

    We just finished a big weekend at the fair, and it is a big deal to us. With our sheep and chickens, we were there several hours a day! But it is a blast! It can’t be summer without the fair!!

  14. Becca says:

    Mel, I know you get a lot of (deserved) credit for awesome recipes here, but let’s talk about photography for a moment. Wow! That “Fireball of Death” picture is stunning. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Ruth says:

    What fun to read about your family’s lastest adventure! It sounds like you all had a whole lot of fun. The story had me reminiscing about when I (actually my Dad) took my bull to the county fair for the livestock competition. It was a big deal…to me anyway. Unlike your boys, I did not win a blue ribbon. That was ok, though, because just being part of the process made me feel like a winner–what with the attention from my Dad and all.

    By the way, I think it is great that your very handsome boys are learning to cook and bake. My husband cooks and bakes some and it is MUCH APPRECIATED!! I think all men need to know the basics of cooking and baking so they can take care of themselves if necessary. It seems to me that there are just a whole lot of guys that are totally clueless about all that is involved in getting great tasting dishes on the family table. I sure hope Miss C is going to like to cook and bake–just like her Mama!!

  16. Sheila says:

    Love the pictures and your storytelling . . . so funny! Our fair draws about 200 people so I cannot identify with this huge 40,000 one. And everyone knows everyone so it’s like a family reunion to go to the fair around these parts. Yes, Brian does deserve “Best Dad Award” and you deserve “Wonderful Mom” award. Kudos to you that you encouraged your boys to just not go to the fair but to be an integral part of it! Great character building teaching them to work hard (a million eggs 🙂 ) to learn essential skills to compete – not to mention learning how much fun and how important community involvement is to the success of building a great community. Thank you for sharing.

  17. Royce says:

    Thank you so much for the pictures and sharing your adventures at the fair. l ‘m a grandma who now lives in Washington state but prior to moving here 2 years ago I lived on the Oregon coast for 25 years. The fair there in Oregon is a big deal also. The town is smaller, and attendance is nothing like yours, but regardless, I think fairs are so important in growing up. Like all of the holidays we celebrate, it is a family opportunity and celebration. So many children do not get to experience that. I love your blog because your family is so “American small town” (that’s a good thing). It’s a wonderful way for your boys to grow up. Congratulations to them on their awards I think that’s awesome. You are an amazing mom that you are able to do all the things you do and you take time out of your life to share it with us. I appreciate it and thank you. You’re not a bad cook either. Ha ha. Can’t wait to hear what everyone does next. Hugs, .

  18. Kim in MD says:

    What a fun, sweet post! How awesome that your boys won prizes for their baked goods!

  19. Kelsey says:

    Fair time is my favorite time of year! Our county fair is going on right now and we go there daily, too. Love it!

  20. Jeanette says:

    Love all the pictures! Thanks for sharing your stories! We grew up showing horses at the Texas State Fair in the Dallas/Ft Worth every year and it was a HUGE deal! We even had a day off school (officially) in our school district along with a free ticket to go to the fair. We went just about every year. Now I live about 3 hours away from the DFW metroplex but last year we took our kids out of school for a day (shhh!!!!) and let them experience the fair and they LOVED it! Did you tell your husband to try to look your way on the ride so you could snap his picture??!!!

  21. Jackie Gonzales says:

    LOVE the Roseau Rams shirt on your little guy 🙂 We were on vacation to CA/AZ/NM this year during our fair…and you would think that going to Disneyland would be good enough. Not so…the kids were seriously bummed after we came back home and they realized they missed the fair! HAHA!

    I think it’s awesome your boys won for their baked goods!

  22. Teresa R. says:

    I’m in Tennessee, so the fair is big for livestock owners and the 4H kids. Your boys are adorable!

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