July 31, 2010

A parade party and then an evening at a old-time country fair

HECTOR, New York, USA - Saturday evening was a return to old-time America with a parade consisting largely of firetrucks, Cub Scouts and homegrown musical talent, followed by a couple of hours wandering the Hector Fire Department Fair.

The fairgrounds had all the requisite things: rides for children, arcade games, a book sale, tractor sales (and demos) and, of course, a beer tent.

All did a lively business.

Scotties march by
Amanda and Miguel photographing the Scotties

We watched the parade from the front lawn of Eric and Tina Hazlitt, who hosted a parade party before (and after) the 40-minute cavalcade of entries. The entries all got applause and whistles as they passed our spot on the highway winding their way on to a judging stand, just the other side of the post office.

There were a smattering of politicians in the parade, too, all handing out vote-for-me brochures and shaking hands with anyone who made eye contact. I shook all their hands, but having written about politics for years, I knew to make sure my other hand was firmly holding onto my wallet.

In most cases, the people in the parade threw candy as they passed by. It was supposed to be for the children, but some people (ok, me too) managed to snag a piece of candy or two. It's been awhile since I ate a Tootsie roll. They're still pretty good.

Parade viewers
Waiting for the next parade group

He sees the food table
Headed for some of the good food 
on the Hazlitt porch

After the parade, Admiral Fox, Amanda and I (yes, that Amanda, the Amanda of Watkins Glen who cures frozen shoulders, straightens bad backs, and is able to leap tall buildings in a single bound) all left the still lively party right after sunset and headed to the Fireman's Fair. Once there, we hit the clam tent, the book tent, the cake tent, the arcade, and finally the huge slide in the center of the fairgrounds.

I opted out of the slide adventure, but managed to make several passes by my favorite exhibit: the beer tent, where for $10, you get enough tickets for six beers. For the record, I have several tickets left over in case we head back today for the chicken barbecue.

Admiral Fox and Amanda were both big winners: Admiral Fox won a stuffed bear (already named Hector Bear) playing ski-ball. Amanda won a cake with a decidedly home-town inscription.

Amanda with her prize
Amanda with her prize

Below are two fair-related videos. One of the parade, the other of Amanda and Sylvia taking a slide ride.

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