Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Stanislaus County Fair

Farmer Sabi

Last night we went to the County Fair. I haven't been in years so I was looking forward to the outing. The line to get in and park was long. The line to get into the fairgrounds (after we parked and waled about half a mile) was long. Once we were in though, things got better.

We started out by walking through the animal areas. There were SO many animals there being shown, judged and as part of interactive displays.

Checking out the cows

The kids had a great time checking out all of the animals.

I was amazed at the animals myself. While I guess that I knew that cows and pigs were large animals, I never really thought about how big they were until I was up close and personal with them last night.

These cows are huge!

Some of them were HUGE!

Feeding Time

As we were walking through the animal areas, so many of the kids who were there with their animals were so wonderful with us. They acted as if they were paid employees of the County Fair and were there to ensure that all of the visitors had a great time at the fair. It was incredible to see that at every area we went to there were youngsters there to answers questions, offer their animals to us to pet or guide us around the booths.

Checking out the aquarium

The cutest youngster though was in the kiddie animal area. One of the 4-H groups designed a little "A-B-C" hay maze. You could find your way throught the maze by following the ABC's. I told the kids to go through the maze so the littlest one in our group could enjoy the ABC process. I wasn't thinking of it as a photo op, just a fun little 5 minute stop. Well, one of the 4-H-er's at this booth told me to take out my camera because he said I could take great pictures there. He then took it upon himself to gather the 3 kids together and bring in a little tractor prop for the picture. He was so sweet and kind as he tried to get the kids all set up in a cute little pose for me. What a cutie he was! I told him that I would only take the picture if he was in it too - he obliged!

Posing!

I left the fair so impressed with these amazing kids. What a good feeling.

After the animal experience, we went through the exhibit halls. As a kid, these were my favorite stops. I was a 4-H-er myself and I used to enter gingerbread houses, cakes and sewing projects in the County Fair. I loved to walk around and see my entries and check everyone else's out. I was so disappointed at what I saw in the exhibit halls last night. One of the exhibit halls was purely for vendors. The second exhibit hall did have entries from kids and adults for food items and sewn items but it was so small. There were hardly any entries in comparison to what it was like when I was a kid. I wonder why? Is it because kids are so into the video age and are not doing anything with their hands anymore? Whatever the reason, the exhibit hall was a sad site. I resolved last night to investigate how to enter projects in the Fair and I will work on something with my students this year to enter in the Fair.

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