Sunday, September 22, 2013

{Field Trip} Common Ground Country Fair

The Common Ground Country Fair is one of our favorite fairs to attend each year. On their opening day, Friday, they allow homeschooling families to enter free as part of their Educational Day. There is also free parking. That is really one of my favorite words. The only issue is there is a ton of people there as a result, but my kids really enjoy going as do I.

This is really an old-fashioned country fair. There is no midway (yeah!!). There are lots of vendors there not only selling product but also educating the public. There is a farmer's market with all kinds of yummy goodies for sale, a children's area with all kinds of fun things for the kids to do, there are performers, and so much more.

It's been a couple years since we've gone since last year we were in the midst of packing to move in to our new home. Ironically enough, the homeschooling family we bought our house from was the first people we saw after we entered the fair yesterday! It was nice to see them again.

My children love heading over to the Children's Area. One of their absolute favorite things to do is to jump in the hay. I always get a kick out of this as I grew up jumping into hay! I lived on a farm and we didn't have a hay baler for many, many years so our hay was stored loose. I can remember climbing up into the rafters of the barn and jumping in to it. So fun.

Mr. H joined us for the day.
Please pretend you can hear him yelling, "Cannonball!" as that is what he did...every.single.time. Absolutely adorable.

Miss H as well. She's growing up too fast for my liking.

(Mr. & Miss H are the two little ones I used to babysit. I had them with us today as their mom had a workshop she was teaching.)

The other favorite thing they wanted to do was slide down the hill. What? No, there was no snow on the ground (thank goodness!). This was cardboard sliding on the grass. Almost as much fun as snow sliding. 

There really was all kinds of things to do the Children's Area. They had long boards with nails in them that the kids could pound on. Volunteers were there to pound them back out for more kids to continue pounding on. It was a favorite activity. They had a bunch of wheat spread out and hose "flails" for the kids to try their hand at "threshing." There was a large "make & take" tent with all kinds of activities inside. Face painting. And the Mad Science of Maine tent was there again and mobbed! They were making "Fire & Ice" bubbles and then "shooting" them with smoke rings. I didn't ask, but I think they were using dry ice to create the effect.

When you touched the bubbles they would go up in a puff of smoke. The hard part with this experiment was making sure the kids didn't pop them all. They were coming out of a bubble machine fast and furious but the kids were all popping them fast and furious. 

They were suppose to use this thing. It's almost as big as Miss H!!!

I love this shot. That's my oldest and while it is one of the bubbles he's reaching for (and eventually nabbed), it kind of looks like he's trying to touch the moon. 

There were a bunch of these "tinker toy" type building sticks and balls out on the ground as well. The kids all had a good time building some structures. My budding engineer had a fantastic time  here.

When it closed in on lunchtime, we headed over to the sheepdog demo. We were a bit early for the noon show so we were able to score a bench to sit on (yeah!) and eat our lunch while we waited. The sheep dog demo is done three times over the course of the day and always well attended.  It's a lot of fun to watch these dogs do what they do and make it look easy. 

Although, on this particular day, they had a four year old dog who wasn't listening that well. It was actually kind of comical to watch. 

We headed out to explore the animal barns and ended our day back in the Children's area for more hay jumping and a bit of face painting as well. Unfortunately, at this point, the heat began to affect some of the members of our group as well as seasonal allergies (I think - possibly a cold). Whining began to ensue and it wasn't all coming from me (trying to keep it real!).

I always think back after days like this and wonder how we could be there for 4-1/2 hours and yet not see half of what we wanted to see. I think next year I need to go in with a better game plan. Overall we do enjoy the Fair. There is always lots to see and do. I enjoy how hands-on it is for the kids. It's not all just looking at exhibits and animals. 

However, I was very glad to pile everyone in to the truck, turn up the air conditioning and the radio, hand out snacks and drinks, and head home. It was a fun and productive day as well as an educational one so that's a good day in my book.

1 comment:

Oh thank goodness! I'm not here all alone. Thanks for leaving me a comment. It helps that I'm not always talking to myself. Right? Hello?