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January 05, 2011

Splash

She and her small circle of friends were twelve years old. It was required that every student participate in the church fair in some capacity. She volunteered to sit in the "hot seat" at the dunker tank.

Each pre-teen spent one hour in the "hot seat" and three hours off. The fair was two full days. Two days meant more money collected. A fun way to pass the collection plate.

She was a good swimmer and outgoing, challenging people strolling by the dunker to throw balls at the lever.



She was dunked over and over and there was a queue to throw balls, men and women and children. The dunker was a huge success that year and she had never enjoyed a church fair so much.

There was a picture in the town newspaper highlighting the church fair. She was famous!

Not this photo, this was found on Google. In the photo, she and her friends were throwing darts at a wall of balloons. She had discovered at age six at a small fair in North Dakota that she had a gift: The gift of aim. Every dart broke a balloon and every shot with the water pistol hit the target.

Tell me about when you were at the fair.

41 comments:

Brian Miller said...

nice. great aim...i remember eating chicken cordone bleu for the first time before the fair b/c it came back up on the merry go round...the ferris wheel was a fav though...

Eileen said...

My school had a school/church carnival for two weeks every spring. I loved it! We never got to be in any of the booths though, just the parents got to volunteer.
But I loved things like the darts/targets/wheels, I loved trying to win the 'fancy' dolls at the wheels. And the rides! The Scrambler, The Whip, and the Ferris Wheel, you could see all over town when you got stuck at the top! And the food! Hot dogs, hamburgers, fries, pizza, soda, cotton candy, popcorn ~ I was in Heaven! It was a blast.
Funny, now that I'm grown, I hate carnivals! Even with all those wonderful memories I still avoid them now.

Loved your memory! Sweet!
All the best,
Eileen

Kristina P. said...

I go primarily for the food. I will try anything fried!

DJan said...

I was never a fan of fairs. I went when my son was little so he could enjoy it, but the crowds and food really didn't interest me. I did, however, finally discover roller coasters and really enjoyed them when they were good!

CherylK said...

Had to laugh at Brian's comment!! That happened to me on the tilt-a-whirl. I don't remember what I had eaten.

We have our smoothie kiosk at our county fair each year and it's so much fun to watch all the kids having a blast. Small town...everyone knows everyone.

English Rider said...

Going to the fair to be in proximity of the slightly scary Bad-Boys who traveled that road. Older, rougher, out of towners with unspoken promises of thrill rides for the students of the all girls school....

LL Cool Joe said...

I remember the music being played at the Fair. In fact when I was a uni my artwork was generally focused around fairgrounds here in the UK during the 50's.

Syd said...

I was there last year and enjoyed the live stock barn the best. I like seeing all the rabbits, horses, pigs, etc. Fun stuff.

TALON said...

That's neat about the true aim. I used to love carnivals...and I've been in a dunk tank, though I've had fun throwing the ball to dunk people!

blueviolet said...

Every shot hit its mark? That is amazing!!!

Jeanie said...

All the fun of the fair, and it was fun, pales in the memory of the one time when I got lost at the fair when I was 7 or 8. I was with my aunt and it I don't know how long I was lost, but it seemed like forever.

Stinkypaw said...

What I remember most of fairs was the fact that I would get some stuff animals and the fact I would get sick... but still pleasant!

Stickup Artist said...

I'm with Stinkypaw up there. Between the food and the fact that I suffer from motion sickness, I got sick at a lot of fairs. But I always had fun. I just don't go on rides anymore until the very end of the night and then I treat myself to one fling. I always pay for it but it's always worth it!

Lori said...

I love county fairs! A good aim huh? :) Pretty cool. And in North Dakota...right now the road from us here in Minnesota...growing up I was in 4H so we had animals and garden veggies in the fair...winning and getting to go to the Minnesota State Fair was always a good time. Now I just like to go because the kids love it...fun to eat fair food for a day...going on the rides and of course the people watching. :)

Robert the Skeptic said...

Woody Allen talks about the fair in Atlantic City where they have those three milk bottles that you try to knock down with a baseball.

He said a tidal wave came in and wiped out the entire pier, everything was gone... except those three milk bottles which were still standing.

Fireblossom said...

The only time I threw darts at a fair, the darts were weighted so they wouldn't fly true. Gyp!

Bernie said...

My story is similar to Brian's. use to love fairs not so much anymore.
......:-) Hugs

lisleman said...

growing up in the midwest the county fairs had plenty of interesting food and animals. I found a love of corndogs at a fair. I always enjoyed walking through the animal barns. Sticking my fingers into the thick wool on the sheep. I love rides but honestly as an adult I think they are a rip-off. I would much rather just go to an amusement park and ride better rides.

Maggie May said...

I can remember a time when I loved the hustle and bustle and noise of a fair. Not anymore!
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Shadow said...

gosh, i wish i could aim....

Rock Chef said...

I was always good at the rifle range - only using little .22 air rifles, but I was a good shot and won a lot of rubbishy prizes.

Anne H said...

When I was at the fair, I lost my money.
I might have been 9 years old.
And I spent all day at the little cabin
of the DAR !
(Daughters of the American Revolution)

James said...

At the Arizona State Fair my dad always kept us in sight even though my little brother and I thought we were on our own

At the target and basketball games, he'd figure out the rifle's aim and the rim's bent, and then sour the carny's mood by nailing the best prizes.

He also taught us to keep our comments quiet and our wallets in our front pockets to avoid pickpockets.

Thanks for the memories, darlin'.

TechnoBabe said...

These are some SUPERB remembrances. Thank you all for your awesome comments about your experiences at fairs, large and small.

The Unbearable Banishment said...

It's the food. It's always been about the food. Fairs = food. If there were no hot Italian sausage booths or fried dough balls (zeps, where I come from) I doubt I'd go.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

We were at the NY state fair in 2006. It was a blast, and we should go back.
a) there were pigs competitions--I love pigs, but nobody else was interested in pig competitions! And piglets! b) the wife and her sister made birdhouses with Audobon, a totally cool souvenir that birds use in our yeard every season c) Foreigner for free! Probably the most popular band at my high school, and there they were, live, playing for free and they were GOOD. REALLY GOOD :)

Lynn said...

I used to like to pick up the swimming ducks for a prize at the fair, until my mom decided that was gambling and wouldn't let me anymore.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

The carnival rides were never as much fun as watching the people taking them and wandering about. Thanks for dropping by my blog and commenting. It means a lot, Roland

Debbie said...

Lovely story. I felt like I was there.
I remember the smell of the fair (not exactly a great smell!) and riding the rides until I almost got sick.

Cinner said...

I seem to remember the ferris wheel the most. that and pink cotton candy.

Kazzy said...

When I was at the fair there were a lot of teens looking for other teens. It was a hang out place. I lived a few blocks from the county fairgrounds.

Vinny "Bond" Marini said...

Strange...I can not remember going to fairs as a youth....

Joanna Jenkins said...

Hey Techno, That sounds like A LOT of fun and brought back memories of hand cut french fries and fresh squeezed lemonade. But my all time favorite fair treat was the fresh corn on the cob booth that dipped the ear of corn into a vat of butter. I could eat that all day now :-)
Cheers, jj

Happy Frog and I said...

Lovely post. I love fairs. I remember candyfloss, bumper cars and learning how to shot at tin ducks in particular!

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

.... I am a good shot with the air gun. But i didn't dare to win the larger prizes because i was afraid my parents would ask: they didn't like fairs.

Attila The Mom said...

We took the kids to the state fair about 10 years ago. As much as I loved it, it was 104 degrees which really takes a lot of joy out of things. ;-)

Shrinky said...

I am glad you laid down a precious happy childhood memory here and there. Oh, it was the waltzers at the carnival for me, spinning round and round and round - or was it eyeing up the boys and eating candy floss? No, hang on, it was the SMELL to the place - or was it the music? Ahhhhhh, I adored it when the fair/carnival came to call!

Maggie said...

That is an amazing gift!

I'll tell you something about fairs I'm afraid of the ferris wheel! LOL Oh, I love all the junk food and games though! I didn't go to this year's fair, I was quite busy during that time! Hopefully i get to go this year!

Marla said...

Love this Techno.



I love the fair. I have been to huge ones and tiny ones in several different states. The one I will always remember with the greatest fondest is the Azalea Festival in South Gate, California. It was our towns little fair that all the kids waited for. I always loved going with my parents and sisters. It is also where Bob and I had our very first date.

secret agent woman said...

I was never a fair person, although I went to a few as a kid and once with my own kids. I have one disturbing memory of a freak show (back when they still had those) at a fair in Mississippi.

KleinsteMotte said...

For me the fairs gave me a time to imagine a better life. I was poor. I got free entry passes from sponsors. I loved the food stalls the gave free samples. My allowance was only good for the cheapest rides but I loved just having the chance to be there, the fair!