Let me first make a formal introduction. This is my best pal, Abby – she is the Polo to this Marco. We’ve been friends for 20 years *gasp* so it’s pretty much anything goes with the two of us. Since our other pals had to work, we made the best of the Fair by trying to see as much as possible that we were interested in. Here she is saying “Welcome to the Kentucky Fairgrounds!”
The competitor exhibits are always a must because there is a lot of talent in the Bluegrass State and you’ll always see something you weren’t expecting. And while I may be confused by some of the subjects of the competition, I try to appreciate them all because fine Kentuckians of all ages took the time to create their entry and took the time to enter it whereas I created my bourbon balls and then ate them.
One competition that I’ve never understood are the aquariums – some have fish while others do not. I’m more impressed with the ones that have living creatures in them, but that’s just me.
And there’s a Christmas Tree decorating contest. Well I guess it’s more of a tree decorating contest since some of them were dressed for Halloween, one was ready for St. Patrick’s Day and, well, you get my drift.
The antiques competition is really odd to me. None of this stuff is made, it is found. And I imagine that a number of these folks resubmit every year. Don’t get me wrong, the past Fair memorabilia was very cool and I loved the carnival glass, but I’m discombobulated by the whole thing.
I looked into the candy competition and I have no idea why I was worried. I thought candy makers would put forth their best candies, decorated deliciously, and there’d be no reason to compete. But after sizing up the competition, it doesn’t look too stiff. Get it? Too stiff? Because bourbon’s a stiff drink? Hard crowd.
There were several beautiful [enough to eat] cakes but everybody was enthralled with the idea of cake too and I couldn’t really pause long enough to get a good shot. You’ll just have to believe me. When it comes to food, a crowd is always milling around.
Basket weaving is a longtime tradition in Kentucky. I know this because I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night. I kid, I kid! Actually, I watched Crafting Traditionon KET and saw an old man make a basket, beginning to end, from a white oak branch. It was amazing to see the skill and patience and tradition that went into that basket. Who knows if he has a basket here but still lots of folks are basket weavers.
The artwork and photography competition is my favorite and I will most definitely be entering in some photographs next year. While walking through the aisles, a few pieces stood out:
Made from rolled paper. Can we say patience? Yes, we can. It was beautiful and then my only shot of ended up slightly blurred. See, I was really working with all kinds of light conditions, I didn’t lie.
Hey, is that a mirror? More like a pencil sketch because I don’t have a Rebel G… or a beard. Her work is very nice – I hope she’s able to sell it because $200 sure would nice!
OK, so one thing Abs and I always looked forward to was the racing pigs. I know it sounds stupid and it’s really for the kids but we’re really just big kids ourselves. The pigs weren’t there last year. And they weren’t there this year either. Mr. Pig Farmer, I don’t know what Kentucky did to make you stay in the Midwest, but we miss you!! So when we saw this painting, our hearts started fluttering. Because not only are they racing pigs, they are racing pigs are Churchill Downs! See those Twin Spires? Dead give away.
Before we exited the exhibit wing, we saw a sight for sore eyes: our pal Nat! Being a Fairground worker, she will be one busy bee for the 11-day Fair but at least we got say hi, give hugs and make fun of each other before she had to bolt off.
I realized about 30 minutes ago that we did miss an exhibit we didn’t want to miss: the ugly lamp contest. Arg! That just means we’ll have to go to Lynn’s Paradise for some comida delicioso and look at the ones they still have displayed.
Now Abs and I did a lot more at the Fair, and if you’ll bear with me, I’ll share it with you but you have no idea how hard it is to pick out pictures when there are so many to choose from. Happens when I get trigger happy. Pretty darn happy I didn’t make my 1,000 picture goal.