Thursday, August 15, 2013

Kentucky State Fair

Before I tell you about our time in Louisville at the Kentucky State Fair, let me tell you that we are now in one of my five favorite places in  the world:  West Virginia.  The other four are Weyburn, New York City, Minnesota, and Sydney, Australia.  Sorry, Montana, you missed the cut by one.
And before I tell you more, might I suggest that you decide where your five favorite places in the world are.  And if you and your partner are used to long, silent meals, ask him/her what his/her five favorite places in the world are and you will have a long and spirited conversation.  Bob and I did at supper tonight.
Both of us have been to the Lewisburg area of West Virginia many, many times and we fall in love with it every time.  It's where the state fair is and we'll be at the fair tomorrow.

Tonight we were near Beckley to see an outdoor musical called "Rocket Boys."  If you have ever seen the old movie "October Sky" you know the story.
But now back to the Kentucky State Fair.
It's not going into the books as one of my favorite state fairs.  The man at the gate boasted that they have 27 (yes, 27) acres of connected, climate-controlled indoor space.  Therefore, a lot of what's happening is indoors and that just doesn't seem right for a fair.
With that in mind, I'll still point out some things like the food.  On the internet Derby pies and ostrich burgers were mentioned.  We never found the ostrich burgers but that wasn't too upsetting as no doubt ostrich tastes like bison which tastes like kangaroo which tastes like chicken....
The Derby pies were total scrumptiousness.

All fairs have their beginnings in agriculture and this one is no different.  I loved the cattle barn and the young FFA  (Future Farmers of America) who were showing their cattle.

Often at a fair the produce section looks pretty wrinkled and forlorn but this was the first day of the fair so everything was still really fresh ...
like the tobacco.  Since North Americans are smoking less, tobacco growers needed to find new markets and their major one is Egypt.
And like sorghum.  Apparently I am not to mistake it for molasses.
Ribbons could be won for the biggest fruits and vegetables.  The biggest watermelon was 223 pounds.
And the biggest tomato was 2.35 pounds.
No produce competitions are complete without the category where kids change fruit and vegetables into something else.  Here's my (and the judges') favorite:
There was ham judging too.
I saw over 500 amazing quilted pieces as well as other displays.  There must have been over 100 aquariums in competition and I wondered who is their right mind transports their large aquarium full of exotic fish just to win a ribbon. 
And in the commercial building there were strange sights to behold.  I could walk through a colon which had cancer.
While I was doing that, Bob could have his own, er, "lovely" experience!
In the same building there was an extremely long line of people so I thought here must be a booth giving away really good stuff, but, no ...

The fairgrounds are really lovely with a water lily pond...
...hanging baskets...
...and unusual trees such as this one.
The fairgrounds may be less beautiful when they spread these piles of hideously dyed wood chips.
The next thing might not be the prettiest, but at some point you are going to be glad you spotted it.

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