The air cools,
the days grow longer,
the autumn air nears,
The grasses stays dewy,
the leaves fall,
Fall is arriving,
the morph of seasons is within our reach,
with the anticipation of change comes the memories of year prior,
The excitement of the new school year,
A fresh beginning and new start.
A time of year I always craved
The exhilaration of the country fair,
Fun and joy. Old and new.
Memories that cannot be replaced.
Autumn brings joy in simplicity
a presence of fun and new beginnings.
(I wrote this poem after our trip to the Carp fair. It brought back memories and created new ones that inspired me to write.)
The best little fair in Canada, aka the carp fair recently filled the weekend rooster of almost everyone I know. Being born and raised in the Ottawa Valley and having a father who has worked in the village of Carp since I was a baby, I am no stranger to this wonderful little event.
I was delighted to have to opportunity to bring my fair-loving ladies to this event. They are 3 and ½ and love fairs. The treats, the rides, the people, the animals, the excitement. They adored it all.
We made a choice to not bring our baby. He is just over one year old. The age in which it is getting difficult to bring him to crowed and exciting places (like fairs). He will not rest easy in his stroller, he would have wanted to participate with his sisters but is just a tad bit too small. I was happy with our choice. There really wasn’t much for him to do and next year he can come and reap the benefits of being a kid at the fair.
However, there was tons of fun things for the ladies to enjoy. While Daddy stayed home with the our little Canton, I decided to invite my dad (grandpa) and my best friend Ashley with her little lady.
It was a beautiful weekend. Sunny and clear. It felt like a summer day. We decided to go on Sunday. We arrived around 11. When you walk into the fair, you are right in the midway. I got a little overwhelmed on where we should start, but once I stopped and took a deep breath, I was fine. We decided our first stop was to make sure our little ones had full bellies. We had not had lunch and if they were not fed, there was a good chance a meltdown would occur. The choice of food vendors was vast. They were all pretty much in the same area right behind the games and midway. This made it easy to find and pick which one you want. We ended up eating exactly what you would expect. Junk food. The kids had corn dogs, fries and ketchup and my dad bought the adults ‘bacon on a bun’ from the local church sponsored booth.
We enjoyed our lunch and were ready to explore the fair. We made a decision to explore the whole fair before we did the midway. The midway would be our last stop. At first, that choice did not seem like a good one. My ladies kept asking when we would get to the rides, but as we started finding more and more cool things to see at the fair (the horses, the cows, rays reptiles, super dogs, the vendors, etc) the demands for the midway diminished.
It was a busy day, so unfortunately we did not get to watch very many horse shows and animal displays. Whenever we would come to area in which they were doing a showing, it was usually packed and hard for us and the kids to see. Next year I will do more research on times so we can get to the area early and see some of the shows that we were really looking forward to seeing.
Even though myself, my dad and Ashley were slightly bummed we did not see more animal showings, the kids did not seem to mind. They got to see about 5 minutes of each showing we passed. They saw 4H showing cows and horses. They saw a gentleman rider perform an ‘western obstacle course’ with his horse. They saw the reptile display at ray’s reptiles and the jumping dogs at ‘super dogs’s show. For them we stayed the perfect amount of time for their attention span.
Keeping the midway till the end served as a motivator for those little ones. It was a hot day, and with the heat and the excitement, whining and meltdowns were more readily available. Using the midway to bring them back down and motivate them to keep their cool worked in our favor.
We strolled past the arenas into to the vendors section. There were tons of cool things. It was hard to look at very much with the kids running ahead but the array of vendors was expansive and interesting. There was a gentleman selling handmade leather belts and accessories. He was patient and kind with us. We all admired his handiwork. He talked kindly to the kids and showed them his belts and belt buckles. The ladies called his belt buckles ‘princess jewelry for your belt’. He loved that.
We ended the vendors stretch back at the midway. We were all buzzing with excitement. Since the toll for the rides is tickets, and like most fairs tickets are not cheap, we decided that 4 rides for each child seemed like a good idea. Our first choice was the merry-go-round. Ashley and I took the kids on it. I liked that they did not charge a toll for adults taking their wee ones one. The girls all loved it. It was exactly their speed
Next the choose the mini roller coaster. There were two little roller coasters at the fair. The one the kids went on was geared towards little ones between the ages 1 and 4. The kids loved it. They went on alone and you could tell they were so excited for the independence.
After their roller coaster ride, they ran over to the little jumpy mickey mouse castle. We were excited they choose that one as it was only one ticket each and they go to jump all of their extra energy out.
We ended our midway experience with everyone’s favorite, the Ferris Wheel. It was quite a big Ferris Wheel. It was tall and gondola style. It was perfect. We were all able to sit together. It was nice to send out the afternoon looking out over the fair and seeing everything that was going on.
With the midway done, we found a shady area and shared some beaver tails and bottles of water. We had been there for 3 and 1/2 hours and were ready to pack it in. There was so much activity packed in to our short stay. All of us were tired.
Our outing to the carp fair was incredible. I highly recommend it to everyone. It was great for kids and adults alike, the parking was organized and efficient, the prices were comparable to most fairs in this area, and it was simply great family fun. Our day was filled with memories, awe and excitement. With a simple visit to the fair we have created a family tradition of. We have established an autumn ‘right of passage’. We know it is Autumn when the fourth weekend of September graces our presence and we get to go to the Carp Fair.
Carp knows how to put on a fair. It is worth checking out next September.