Yesterday, I went to the South Dakota State Fair as planned. My mom can and got me at around 2 PM so I could do my thing.
My oldest brother had reserved a parking space for my parents just a couple blocks away from one of the gates. It is a good thing they did otherwise, it would have just been easier for mom and I to get on the bus at Wal-Mart or whereever and ride it there considering how far away some people were parking.
It was an even better idea because of my dad’s health. Dad was at the Fair basically all day yesterday. He rented a motorized cart so that he could get around. Although I have to wonder how easy he was getting around considering that when I was there it was shoulder to shoulder traffic. I said and heard the phrase “excuse me” more times than Vikki Guerrero spoke it in her entire WWE career I am sure.
I can’t help but wonder how often I would go to the Fair or would have gone as a child if the State Fair were located somewhere other than in my own home town. I think that would have depended on where it was if not in Huron. If it were in Mitchell or Sioux Falls I’m sure we would have gone probably once a year for a day. If it were in Rapid City though, that would have been different as a 7 hour trip would not have been as easy to manage.
Anyway, mom and I walked through a couple of houses that they had set up. One was a governor’s house and the other was a demo house. They were both really nice, the demo house had a walk in closet that was not much smaller than my bedroom…and it even had a TV in it. Only two bedrooms though but it is meant to be put on a basement.
Then we went through some of the buildings. In the first one, I bought some powdered cocktail mixes that you just mix with your alcohol and such in a ziplock bag. I sampled a couple before I bought then and I really liked the Vodka Lemonade. I got that one and a Strawberry Daiquiri because it was happy hour so got 2 for $20 which I think was a better deal than $12 for one. Now I just need to have a party or something.
Also in that building there was an area set up to sample various kinds of dip on pretzel sticks. I sampled five of them and went five for five as they were all pretty tasty. At the time I didn’t buy any of those but almost immediately after getting home I wished that I had.
That building also features the “all the milk you can drink” area but this year I didn’t drink any.
Then we went to the main building for getting free stuff. I got a reusable bag, a pencil, a notepad, a notepad magnet combination thing, a keychain, a ruler and what trip to the Fair would be complete without obtaining a yardstick?
We went to some other buildings as well. In one of them, I stood on a full body vibration machine for a couple minutes. If you don’t know what one of those is, it is a platform and it has handles on the front and on the sides that you can grip. You turn it on and the platform starts to vibrate and the motion moves up throughout your whole body. It felt incredibly good let me tell you.
At some point we saw a demonstration for a lightweight vacuum cleaner type thing. It was really cool and so we decided to buy one, they were running at $70. So we’re going to try it in my apartment because (spoiler alert) my dog sheds.
Then we went by the Farmer’s Union area and they were giving out free cake. There are two things about this I like. The first is free and the second is cake. As a bonus I could sit down for a moment and eat. We weren’t too far away from the freedom stage at that point so we got to hear the free entertainment. At that time it was Tonic Sol-Fa. After we finished our cake we were going to head over to get a better listen but that’s when they concluded their performance. We weren’t going to get much closer anyway as like everything else at the time, it was packed.
Next we ventured to the food court. I was on a mission to find four particular items of Fair food and we knocked two of them out in one place. We got to a stand selling corndogs and strawberry smoothies. They were both fantastic tasting. Usually, my State Fair drink of choice is a large Lemonade but when my friend mentioned the Strawberry Smoothie a few days ago I had a change of heart. I can have lemonade anytime. Sure, I can have a Strawberry smoothie anytime as well but it does require a little more work. I’m glad I went with that because it was nice and cold and that felt refreshing on such a hot day. Also, the plastic cup it came in was useful later when we filled them up with water.
It was at the food court and surrounding area that we saw a lot of people we know. We saw the woman who runs the Donut Shoppe, let’s just say she knows me well. We saw my uncle Dale and my cousin Leah and bumped in to the daughter of one of my dad’s friends who herself is one of my friends. Mom saw a few other people she knew because she knows everyone.
I never made it down to the midway to go on any rides. I don’t go on many rides to begin with, the “Music Express” and the “Tilt-a-whirl” being a couple of the ones that I do ride but riding was not practical yesterday. That vacuum cleaner was not heavy to carry but two boxes inside a plastic bag meant it could be a little unwieldy even with handles.
It was about this time that we decided to head back. I still had two more items that I wanted. We found a Kettle corn stand and that knocked item #3 off of my list. In keeping with my vow to go on a diet I decided to get a small bag instead of the large bag I secretly wanted…okay, it wasn’t that big a secret.
Final stop on our way to the gate we entered was a funnel cake stand for item #4. We purchased a funnel cake to split, mom and I try to split one of these every year. I don’t know why I didn’t eat funnel cakes as a child but talk about regrets. I don’t think I had my first one until 2010 or 2011 and talk about your wasted life. I like to get them with toppings if I can but these were just plain but even plain they’re still awesome.
From the good timing department as we were waiting on the bench near the gate my sister called. My dad was ready to go. So we ate as much of the funnel cake as we could and walked the rest of the items and leftover cake the short distance to her vehicle.
When I type all of this out it doesn’t actually seem like we did all that much. Yet the truth is that we got there a little after 2 PM and left nearly 5 hours later. I’m not sure how this is even possible but my phone does not lie….so far as I know. I was sore, tired and needed a shower in a bad way because of how drenched I was in my own sweat. We got dad and they dropped me off at home.
It really is a funny thing, however. When I first started writing this entry I was going to make the point that a lot of the Fair really isn’t that fun if you can’t see anything. I can’t see displays or read packets of information and not everything is a hands-on experience. Usually, I go to the Fair for the food and maybe ride a couple of rides. However, as I write this entry I realize that I really did have a lot of fun yesterday, more fun than I thought at the time.
After returning to my apartment, I took the dog outside. I figure best to do that before I sat down since once I sat down, no guarantee I am getting up. Turns out that I actually moved around quite a bit once I got home. My friend Scott stopped by because our friend Luke is in town with his family. He dropped by and he and I had a beer together while Scott drank a pop.
After Luke left I went out to Wal-Mart quickly with Scott because for the second time in just a couple of days I decided to buy a couple of 3 and 3/4 inch Star Wars figures that just came out. On Friday, I got a Darth Vader one and on Saturday I got Luke Skywalker and my first character from the new film Captan Phasma. Then I came home and went to bed. These account for 3 of the Star Wars figures I own as I also have a General Grievous around here somewhere.
I guess the only other thing of note is that yesterday I made use of eSPN Goalline for the first time. Before I left for the Fair and after returning home I watched that channel exclusively to keep up on all of the college football games. So I have already met my goal to watch more college football this season than I did last year…and it only took a day.
Tomorrow, I intend to spend Labor Day with my feet up watching The Simpsons marathon on FXX. So that is basically my story of my trip to the Fair. If you enjoyed reading this, I’m glad. If you didn’t enjoy reading this, remember that I write my posts for my benefit and the enjoyment of others is something that is a bonus, even if it is a highly appreciated bonus.