a day at the fair.

by Janetha on September 14, 2010

in meals

i LOVE the state fair. it is a family tradition. i have been every year since i can remember.

you can check out my fair recap from last year here and my flashback friday post about the fair here.


i spy a momma b next to the big fair park sign!


my mom and i decided to head to the fair a little early so we could fully enjoy the commercial buildings. you know, the buildings full of booth after booth of people selling crap you see on infomercials. we love that.

there were two purchases we made.. it is hard to convince us that we NEED a sham wow, a pet hair removal roller or a semi-functional salsa maker (okay, it is not hard to convince us, we have just bought those items in years passed and are now wise to their tricks!)

anyway.. purchase #1: a ceramic grater!


not only are these cute.. they are so functional!


it works for garlic, ginger, hard cheeses, spices.. so many options!


grate it


clean it off with the brush


voilà! instant grated garlic. we were sold.


i was really intrigued by these piggy banks.


gives a whole new meaning to food bank, no?!


didn’t buy one.

didn’t buy any of these, either, but they sure were pretty!

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purchase #2 was this peeler. i am fairly certain we purchased the peeler based on the sales rep alone. his enthusiasm made us think we NEEDED THIS PEELER!


sure enough.. we ended up with two of the world’s best peeler. IMG_1883

i was excited. i will let you know how it works! it also came with a free julienne tool. can’t beat that!


every year, my sisters and mom get their wedding rings cleaned for free at the fair.


i have always complained that i never had a ring to be cleaned…


until now! shiny :)


we were parched and HOT (isn’t it fall?!) and so my mom whipped out her first of many $20s.. she always jokes that she has a plethora of $20 bills made each year specifically for the fair :)


fresh lemonade!


something that is not to be missed at the fair is the butter sculpture. it is different each year, but i think they reuse the butter.



wow. those are some fun facts.

here’s this years sculpture!



it is actually pretty impressive that they are able to carve such detail into the sculpture! and it is fun to see it change each year.

eventually, we met up with my sister in law, niece, brother, marshall and dad.



my brother was already yawning right when we got there!


we immediately decided to get dinner. check out what i spotted… IMG_1904

deep fried, chocolate covered bacon. did you catch susan’s post on that stuff?


i got a kick out of the little chocolate covered pig picture. i decided to opt against the bacon and went for some BBQ:


i ordered the chicken pita, sans mayo.

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it was just OK. but a lot better than some of the heavy food fare at the fair. i saved room for a treat for later ;)

marshall hates seeing the animals at the fair, and i don’t blame him. it is pretty sad when you think about showing off your animals that are about to be slaughtered.. i do eat meat, but i don’t think it is a spectator sport. we checked out the award-winning produce instead.


PEACHES! my favorite.


silly produce sculptures!


check out the pumpkin and the knotted gourd!

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both blue ribbon winners!

me & my favorite guy around.


does that shirt look familiar?

next up: THE BIG YELLOW SLIDE. by far my favorite part of the fair. we used to go up and down about 5 times each, but we have gotten more frugal through the years and just went down once. which was better than last year, when it was CLOSED due to the rain!


it’s hard to see, but i am there in the lead! marshall is behind me, then my bro & niece, and momma b is straggling behind. she got a slow start ;)


love the slide.

next up was the stables.

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marshall likes the stables because the horses are pets and well taken care of :)


after the horses, we decided it was time for a treat!


ice cream? yes please.


i got vanilla bean. no surprise there, it’s my favorite. marshall got peaches & cream but he is hiding it behind his back. um.




best parents ever! thanks for treating us to a fun day at the fair!


and a happy birthday to you, momma b :)


love her.


1. what infomercial items have you purchased or have THOUGHT about purchasing? the magic bullet infomercial always sucks me in. and i own two of them. i also really want that perfect square brownie pan, and mighty putty. do any of you own a bumpit?!

2. do you like fairs? how do you feel about animals being “shown off” at the fair? it makes me sad to see the animals. the ones on display because they are about to be someone’s dinner as well as the ones tied up for little kids to ride on (ponies walking around in circles) and this year they had a sea lion exhibit.. it was SO sad :( it made me think of mama pea’s post on the cove. but i LOVE seeing the artwork, produce and other award-winning items on display. but honestly, the commercial buildings and the big yellow slide are reason enough for me to go.

xo. janetha g.

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Jessica @ How Sweet September 14, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Okay, that DOES look like a great peeler! And I would love one of those cupcake banks – so adorable.

I don’t think I’ve ever purchased something from TV, but oh my gosh you hit the nail on the head – I want that brownie pan so bad!

Kate September 14, 2010 at 2:33 pm

I have that same peeler with the free julienne tool – except I have no idea how to use it! I got it at Bed, Bath, & Beyond and there are no instructions!

If you figure it out please let me know!

Heather September 14, 2010 at 2:40 pm

I feel that the animals at fairs always look so sad and overworked!

However, I love seeing animals in the wild. Unless they are too close, such as the bears heading toward our lunch spot on my recent kayaking trip (you can read about it on my blog linked abouve)! The cub was soooo cute, although we chose to make a hasty retreat!

steph September 14, 2010 at 2:41 pm

I think perhaps that I SHOULD be embarrassed by these purchases (which were made over approx. ten years) but I love infomercials and half this junk is pretty useful….well, most of them.
Thankfully, my addiction is now under control as I no longer watch television and have a significant other who is practical…

– the tony little gazelle (which doesnt work at ALL and is now in storage)
– the ab roller (which would potentially work if you had the core strength to attempt to use it)
– the vita mix (YES YES YES!)
– two magic bullets (loveee it)
– bumpits (NOT mine, my little sisters)
– the snuggie (which was a gift… aka the slanket)
– oxyclean
– shamwow
– slapchop (absurd)
– wonderhanger (which we have had for YEARS)
– the strap perfect (which makes your bra into a racerback…. fabulous invention)


Tina September 14, 2010 at 2:45 pm

My ring needs a serious cleaning. I don’t ever recall seeing that service offered at our fair. :(

I love those slides. Those bring back so many childhood memories.

Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) September 14, 2010 at 2:53 pm

They eat the animals that are displayed ?!?!?! :( I didn’t know that. That was always my fav part of the fair. I never rode the rides and never really cared for the food, but the animals were always #1. I never knew that they killed them… not sure I’ll be stopping by there again. I agree with you… I eat meat, but that’s a little up close and personal. Maybe that makes me a hippocrit… *shrugs* I eat turkey, but I don’t really want to pet it first. :(

We once bought some Sham Wow’s… Wow they did not. Fail. I think we still have them, but should prob just throw them out. A good old fashioned towel works better imho.

mom September 14, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Wahoo!! Another great fair experience!! I missed capturing your face during the peeler demo whoa you were totally mesmerized!!

Thanks for a great birthday xoxo!!

Erica September 14, 2010 at 2:58 pm

what a fun/silly night. Some of the food at those fairs is out of control! The knotted gourd is really cool. And mmm vanilla bean is my favorite too. I definitely own a magic bullet and love it to pieces.

Mary September 14, 2010 at 3:03 pm

Not all the animals at the fair get eaten. I showed beef cattle (heifers) and lambs, and they got to come home with me after the show so they could make more show animals (and be the best pets ever!). The purpose of the show animals is to teach children (in 4-H and FFA) how to properly select and care for animals, whether they are market (going to be sold at market and most likely killed) or breeding stock.

I do feel sorry for some of the animals that are used for making money – like the ponies for kid’s rides because they are hauled around from fair to fair and most likely don’t get to run and play in pastures like they should.

lisaou11 September 14, 2010 at 3:21 pm

I LOVE the fair and I always go with my dearest momma. I can’t believe you managed to only really get ice cream.

I always get an Indian Taco (share it with my mom) and a corn dog (allllll to myself!).

I bought the magic bullet off the infomercial. Now that’s a great buy! I have also bought the ShedEnder and love it as well.

paijery September 14, 2010 at 3:55 pm

The fair looks SO FUN! We kind of have something like that here…but no where near as cool.
Happy Birthday Momma B!!
I too have the magic bullet and have been sooo tempted to buy the bumpit haha. I also bought the gazelle! It’s a piece and have long since sold it.
I really really hate the animal thing. Last time I went to the Exhibition (our cheap version of a state fair) some carnie was selling kittens with rope for leashes for $1…uuuuughhhh I can’t even think about it.
Enough rambles from me! Glad you had such a good day!! xx

Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble) September 14, 2010 at 4:04 pm

Looks like such a fun fair!

Ahh infomercials totally suck me in!! I have a magic bullet [but I bought it in-store] and I have a Jack Lalaine juicer. Oh, and Nick is obsessed with his Sham-WOW’s!! haha.

I love fairs, but I really do hate seeing the animals caged up like that. They never look happy! I am not a fan of animals for show, and would avoid fairs [like I do the circus] if there wasn’t other things I wanted to see…


Ashley September 14, 2010 at 4:07 pm

There ain’t a darn thing wrong with “showing” off the animals. It’s a credit to their breeder and owner for how well they are kept before slaughter. That is a way of life for Midwestern’s.

I love our local fairs at home. Especially the 4H and FFA ones.

BroccoliHut September 14, 2010 at 4:24 pm

Love those ceramic graters–cool!
The MB commercial sucks me in too– i also have two of them. The ad for the Ninja blender gets me every time too…although I have yet to actually purchase one.

coffeeandthepaper September 14, 2010 at 4:27 pm

haha my first semester of college i came home and found that my mom had ordered all this infomercial stuff. she was so embarassed when I found the loot!

Love fairs too, but hate the animals part!

Texas Gunslinger September 14, 2010 at 4:29 pm

The Magic Bullet is by far my favorite household appliance and something “as seen on tv”. I would get sucked in to those infomercials whenever they came on and always wanted one. So, I did what any other bride-to-be would– I registered for one for our wedding and VOILA, I got one! Best wedding gift ever– I use it daily! :)

I have bought, personally, ProActive, BareMinerals and Sheer Minerals from seeing it on an infomercials. However, Bare Minerals is the only thing I continued using and I’ve been wearing it for 6 years ever since the first time I bought it:)

Taysa September 14, 2010 at 4:31 pm

I love the WA state fair and it’s one of the things I miss most now that I live in CA. The animals never bothered me. My extended family sometimes would show chickens and rabbits in the fair…we never ate them. It’s up to the person who entered the animals, but that’s what farmers do–they eat the meat! I agree with Ashley above…the animals at the fair are actually being treated humanely enough to be seen before they’re eaten, unlike a lot of the meat that’s available for eating at the fair, I’m sure.

carbzilla September 14, 2010 at 4:46 pm

I’ve bought a similar ring cleaner at the fair and used it until it turned gross. It worked though my sis-in-law was convinced it was eroding her diamond (she’s nuts).

Our big fair (The Puyallup) is going on now but it’s over an hour away and such a hassle. I haven’t been since high school. We really should venture out one of these years. I love everything about it (even the animals). I do think 4-H and those kinds of things do teach kids to respect animals and get close to them.

Naomi(onefitfoodie) September 14, 2010 at 4:47 pm

omg I am such a sucker for informercials!!! my mom and i would go to the flea market in the cape and there were always people there trying to sell things and once we bought this jewlery cleaner! it is actually great and we got lots of sizes so you can find one bottle everywhere in our house LOL

Fairs are so fun, but i HATE rides so if they have rides, I stick to the games and things to buy :)

your mama and dad are SO cute!! i love that last pic of them!!

you also look so pretty!!

Erika September 14, 2010 at 4:53 pm

What a cool fair – it’s a kitchen tool paradise! I would probably buy everything… ;-)

Katie September 14, 2010 at 5:39 pm

I love state fairs! All the artwork and food…love! After reading this I really want a caramel apple and some ice cream. :-)

Someone I work with has a bumpit and it works well! Too funny…

Sara September 14, 2010 at 5:42 pm

OK your fair experience is pretty darn close to my own! (We go to the San Diego County Fair.) My boyfriend and our friend actually ate the deep fried & chocolate covered bacon, AND deep fried butter!#!! Gross and even more gross. haha. We also went on the slide, and I yelped on every single bump on the way down because I kept catching air and I was partially convinced I was gonna fly off somewhere. hahaha.

Lily @ Lily's Health Pad September 14, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Ok, I have a Ninja, which works decently and a Ped Egg, which is a piece of crap!

Stephen and I go to the Charleston fair every year. It doesn’t compare to your fair experience in the least! There are NO kitchen items, NO produce, and NO slides!

Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) September 14, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Happy birthday Momma B- by the way- do you realize that you are HAWT!!?? Sheesh all that clean eating and hitting the gym is paying off in a huge way!

Gosh, the more gadgets I used to buy, the more they would sit there after the initial honeymoon period. Now I’m happy with a good quality chefs knife and there is less clutter!! I gave away my brownie pan- it’s the one that looks like a labyrinth right? So everyone gets an ‘end’ piece? I never made brownie. Dumb for me to buy it.

I never go to fairs. There was a swap meet that called itself a fair- i went for the Polish dogs when calories didn’t count :-)

Love yoU!

Laura @ Starloz September 14, 2010 at 6:35 pm

ohhh, i love infomercials but have never actually wanted to buy anything. i always fear they will break straight away.

i havent been to a fair since i was a little kid, i’m going to investigate. i want to go to a fair now!

Paige @Running Around Normal September 14, 2010 at 7:26 pm

The grater is SO cute!
And the pumpkin and gord are unreal! I can see why they won blue ribbons!
I got sucked into the sham wow rags – yeah, they totally suck lol
Glad you had such a fun day at the fair with the fam!! :D

emily September 14, 2010 at 7:31 pm

1. I really (really really) want that informercial product (can’t remember the name) that clips onto the back of your bra straps and pulls them together to make a racerback.

2. I loooooooove the fair. Honestly, I’ve gotten to go to so few fairs in my life that I just try to enjoy them, it’s hard for me to think seriously when I’m petting a pig :D

Rachael September 14, 2010 at 7:41 pm

The animals upset me too. But I love the randomness and down-home feel of most fairs, plus the completely bizarre food choices – if it can be fried, it shall be fried (especially true here in the South. The NC State Fair is a foray into the versatility of superheated vegetable oil). Really, where else can you see artistically rendered butter and swirly squash :)?

julie September 14, 2010 at 7:42 pm

oh my godddddddddddd i TOTALLY bought that peeler in union square from this random dude who claimed it was “the best peeler on earth” and i was sold and BOY AM I GLAD. that peeler is seriously amazing. excellent purchase.

i on the other hand would have went for the cupcake piggy bank. and named it my food fund haha

Mary (A Merry Life) September 14, 2010 at 8:07 pm

I looooove state fairs. I’m so sad I moved and missed the one at home. Maybe I’ll visit home next year around the right time to catch it. :) Your photos make me jealous!

1. I’m thought about buying a ton of stuff from infomercials but I’ve never actually bought anything.

2. I don’t mind the animals at the fair. At least around where I live the fair animals get a pretty good life even though they have to “work” hehe. I try not to think about the ones that end up as dinner though.. sad but yummy? Ah.

Elina (Healthy and Sane) September 14, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Looks like a fun day although I really don’t like fair food. I think I’d bring something with me or make sure we go somewhere in the hood to get better food (can you leave and then come back… I’m such a nube ;) ).
PS – I don’t think you saw this yet – check out the giveaway I’m hosting! :)

kbwood September 14, 2010 at 9:32 pm

just wanted to stop by and say I LOVE YOU!! your mom is ADORABLE!

marisa September 14, 2010 at 11:24 pm

I think I am going to have to figure out a way to make it to the Utah fair next year. It just isn’t the same here. Thanks for sharing all of the pictures so I could enjoy the experience. The yellow slide and the butter sculpture are my favorites… after the commercial buildings!!

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) September 15, 2010 at 12:40 am

I loved going to the fair as a kid! I always had all kinds of “artwork” entered to be judged and my mom would enter her pies and canned homemade jams and my dad would enter his flowers from his garden, total midwestern stuff. And we’d end up with plenty of el cheapo knives and peelers and state fair specials! God, that’s the stuff that memories are made of!

I also loved going to the midway/ride area of the fair. And playing games of chance w/ the carnies. I would pretend I was just a dumb unathletic girl and then proceed to win myself some big ass stuffed animal prizes from shooting baskets or ring toss, etc. God, I love games like that.

Ok your day looks incredible!!!

Email me your thoughts when you have a chance :)


Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine September 15, 2010 at 6:09 am

I never buy stuff from infomercials because I feel like I still have the “NO, You’re NOT getting that” mentality from when my parents would say it as a kid. But hey, I have my own credit card now…perhaps I should splurge?

I haven’t been to a fair in ages, so I’ve never thought about the ethical concerns, but yeah, I think it’s messed up (not to mention unappetizing) to see the animals before they’re slaughtered. What’s the point? To make sure it’s healthy while it’s still alive?

Di September 15, 2010 at 6:21 am

The fair looks like a lot of fun! There’s one big one in Western MA in the fall, but I’ve sadly never been.

I’m not really sure how I’d feel about seeing animals I know will get slaughtered, and I’m a meat eater. Weird how that works, right? :(

AJ September 15, 2010 at 7:11 am

LOVE the shamwow! We use them under the dog’s water bowls to catch the “slop”. =)

Also love the hercules hook – puts a tiny hole in your wall and holds a lot of weight (for pictures, mirrors, art, etc.).

I’ve wanted the grater plater for awhile now, please report back on “actual use” LOL!

thedelicateplace September 15, 2010 at 7:58 am

hahah i thought we were the only people who had butter sculptures (out in amish country) ;) btw your ring is beautiful!! sincerely, it is a stunna! your mom and you are so cute! loved the post

Angharad September 15, 2010 at 8:30 am

Can we just talk for a minute about how cute you and your mom are? Super ridiculously cute! It’s so lovely how much you <3 her!

Anyway. Sorry. Um, yup, seeing the animals at the state fair made me REALLY sad this year. I kind of hated it and felt nauseous the whole time. Completely with Marshall. I hate seeing them in such small confined spaces looking miserable :(

Love the other fair stuff though: art work, malts, food on a stick…all of it!

Kristen September 15, 2010 at 9:08 am

I live in Indiana and have worked a booth at the Indiana State Fair for the last 9 summers (for the State Agency that I work for- public health). I feel so lucky that I come and go as I please. I visit every part of the fair because I LOVE IT.

I have a hard time seeing the animals that are there to be eaten as well. I remember this year, I saw a beautiful cow. He was a blue ribbon beef cow, so fluffy and soft. They had fans on him and I just couldn’t believe what his fate was.

Also, I get my ring cleaned EVERY year.

My favorite indulgence is the deep fried cookie dough…and the fresh lemonade….and the corn (I *am* in Indiana!)….and the milk shakes from the dairy bard…this list could go on and on and on. Thank GOD for the gym!

Nicole C September 15, 2010 at 9:38 am

I have a friend from Indiana and she raves about how great the fair is there!

Kristen September 15, 2010 at 9:09 am

OH- and we have a cheese sculpture every year instead of a butter sculpture. I definitely check that sucker out every year

LG September 15, 2010 at 9:32 am

Ahh the ring cleaning at the fair! My friends are big on that at the Calgary Stampede. Too funny.

Nicole C September 15, 2010 at 9:37 am

I will have to say I think the same about the magic bullet but am not willing to buy one. If it was a gift, that’s another story. I instead have a single serve container that fits on my blender for shakes.

I LOVE the fair!! I haven’t been in a couple years since there is only a one lane road in and the line was hours just to get there. Luckily I have an FJ Cruiser and used it to run up a mountain and off road to get there. The Super Slide (yellow slide) is my all time FAVORITE. As for the animals, I never thought about them turning into someones dinner, I just always liked seeing the baby piglets.

HappyMediumOfHealth September 15, 2010 at 10:16 am

I love the fair that we have in our county! The fair lasts for a week long and people bring campers or stay in tents on the fairground and it is a HUGE deal! I used to go everyday when I was little and my friends and I would just run around at the fair or hang out in someones tent but now I only go for a day just to eat food! My favorite food to get there is a delicious cinnamon bun with a huge amount of peanut butter icing from a local vendor…sooooo good.

Susan September 15, 2010 at 10:27 am

Whaaa?? No chocolate covered bacon? :P It’s okay, I tried enough for the both of us. Someone compared it to dog food, and I would actually have to agree. I think it would be much more effective if they made crispy bacon with a chocolate shell over top instead of the thick cut with chocolate sauce. They had that same grater at the exhibition here in Toronto too! My roommie almost bought one, but I talked her out of it. We don’t have enough room for our kitchen stuff as is :P

1. I almost got sucked into P90X. But then my roommate at the time bought it so I got to try hers instead :)

2. They don’t have animals at the exhibitions here (that’s our version of “state fairs”). Watching the type of people that go to those things is far more interesting anyways…

Jenn September 15, 2010 at 12:24 pm

I used to love going to the state fair when I was a kid in Indiana. Almost every year I would go and show my horse. We had a blast! I don’t have a problem with the animal area. Most of those animals are raised by 4-H kids who take wonderful care of their animals. It’s heartbreaking for most of them to sell them. I could never do that. Horses, of course, are another matter. Almost every horse there is loved and adored by their human partner.

Andrea@WellnessNotes September 15, 2010 at 3:09 pm

I love that the fair is a tradition for you guys! I remember the big yellow slide from last year!!! :)

I haven’t been to a fair in years, but I think it would be fun to go with the toddler some time. I do think the animals are sad however…

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