Jack of Many Trades

Harvests and Midways

Originally posted: 2013-07-27

It's the height of summer. August starts next week and it's just about time to start celebrating the first harvest.

Yep, it's fair season, the longest holiday on my personal festival calendar. I spent today out at the Washington County Fair, looking at livestock and crafts, talking to the OSU Master Gardeners about how to make my sad little garden less sad and little next year, and walking the midway. It's a pretty small fair, though not as small at the Multnomah County Fair was last year.

Fair season has been my favorite time of year since I was small. The country fair where I grew up featured the annual library book sale, so libraries and fairs and carnivals and harvests are all wrapped up together in my head. It was a little like a book harvest, especially on Sunday when I could full a whole bag - I was putting up books for winter.

This is a holiday that's best celebrated by being present. The exhibitors are there to be seen. The rides want riders, and the performers, an audience. Give your energy in appreciation of the offerings that have been made. The finests of flowers have been cut and laid out for the judges and the powers of the fair, the best produce, the most prized of baked goods and preserves. They are given as offerings to the fair itself.

At the height of summer, at the first harvest, we already begin to understand what is coming later in the year. The cycle continues.