Friday, August 10, 2012

Tillamook County Fair

So far the only real advantage I can figure out to being in the "senior" range of life is that I get a discount on entertainment- like at the movies and the county fair. Here in Oregon our senior status earned us a 6 dollar ticket to the big show instead of of a 10 dollar ticket. Since I've not yet been able to settle on any other advantages to this stage of life...I'll take it, thank you very much!

So in today's slide show you will see much in the way of what makes county fairs county fairs: carnival, midway, good but not good for you eats, animals, tractors, horse races. But Tillamook throws in a specialty- The Great Pigs N Fords Race! This is a variation of the little pigs that run around a tiny track much to the delight of everyone- well, me anyhow. I love pig races! In this race, there is a "barn" full of 20 pound pigs beside the race track. The big race track. And there are 5 or more stripped down old Model T Fords which hand crank start only. Each driver must grab a pig from the barn, tuck it under one arm, then crank his engine, hop in and race around the track one time, whereupon he returns to the barn, exchanges pigs, restarts his model-t, and goes around again. Two heats a day. Finale on Saturday. Well, this race has been going on since 1925 and its popularity is demonstrated by the fact that the bleacher stands fill up more than an hour before the race. With the start of a gun, the race is off to the roar of the crowd....and squeal of the pigs. What a riot!

Now there was a cultural aspect to this fair as well. We learned lots more about local vegetation, methods and identifiers for clamming and fishing and farming techniques. But let's be honest here- in the end, it really is all about the pigs.

Here is a video clip of the beginning of the second heat of the race. You'll get the idea!

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