Photo: Steve Thurston
My last day at the county fair was Saturday, and I made sure to get out there at night because I love midway lights in a dark sky. I figured, too, there was some story there with the rain rolling through. (See the slideshow.)
The irony is that Friday's attendance figures were down because of the threat of rain, Tiffany Kudravetz just told me on the phone. She is the chair of the fair's board. Saturday's numbers were better than last year, despite actual rain, and the midway choked with people, at times.
For about an hour, the rides shut down (see the slideshow for more on that).
The people I spoke with, though, seemed very willing to risk damp clothes for the fun of the rides, games and food. I saw a lot of wet shoulders and hair, and one poor, young woman had taken a seat (accidentally?) in the mud.
One man used his prize--an inflatable, oversized hammer--as an umbrella. He told me it worked, but I wondered how well when I saw his wet shoulders and back.
Derrick Washington ran the basketball game, and he was rather annoyed. He wore a thin, yellow rain poncho--the type you might get at Niagara Falls. The hood clung damply to his head, and the basket balls were shiny with rain.
His booth had no roof, so why even bother being out there, he wondered aloud. No one was going to stop, in the rain, to shoot baskets, he said.
Worse, his pay is a percentage of his take, and the rain washed out his earnings.
Still, just before I left him, he shifted his tone a little.
He said, "My motto is, I won't worry about it. I'll make money another day."
I hope you had fun at the fair.