The closest to Normal (Illinois) that I've ever been.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Alyn and the County Fair

This week we had our first house guest: Danny's Aunt Alyn. Alyn was en route to visit friends a convent in Kankakee, and paused in Normal to see us. Highlights of her visit include a day at the McLean County Fair. The Fair was lovely--it was quite small, but still had about an afternoon's-worth of things to do and see.

There were rides, of course. Joseph chose the mini-ferris wheel and rode the dragon roller coaster.

Both kids went in the Cuckoo Haus. (Actually, I never got around to asking them what all went on in there, but they seemed to enjoy it.)

Sam went on the big slide, and then he went on "Fear Factor" which was a really cool ropes course that was elevated @ 50 feet. Sam was amazing--he was very nimble like a monkey and he wasn't at all freaked out to be suspended so high above the ground.

We stopped by the Operation Santa booth, and the kids made holiday cards for the troops. Joseph's was a Christmas tree star, and Sam's was a velociraptor-angel.

We visited the livestock, and Joseph decided that he hates roosters, although he liked watching the sheep getting sheared and bathed.

We saw a horse handling show. One of the junior handlers was trying to take a donkey through the obstacle course. The donkey refused to do every single obstacle. It was definitely the highlight of the show for the kids.

There were several demonstrations, including a dude displaying the dangers of messing with powerlines and transformers. It was actually really educational. He discussed why birds can sit on the wires without getting shocked, and enumerated the common ways that people get electrocuted. He used Sam for a demo about why foil balloons are dangerous. The kids also watched a lengthy performance by a ventriloquist--the show was pretty weak and we kept asking the kids if they wanted to go, but they were totally absorbed.

The 4H show was excellent of course. The usual veggies and preserves were there, but there were also many new categories, such as cake decorating, metalworking and Lego construction. We could not tear the kids away from the Lego display--they spent ages looking at every little detail and discussing which kits each of the components came from.

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