Saturday, July 28, 2012

Kickapoo Country Fair 2012

Come stroll with us at the country fair put on by the good folks from Organic Valley and countless community volunteers.  It's our first year checking it out, so no expectations....but even the walk from the parking lot seems like bliss.  I think that's a good sign.

 *photo by a random passerby
First thing after we enter the fair, we wander toward the cooperative art tent.  Ooooh, that's the mosaic made by the folks from our homeschool co-op.  We chat with some of the kids that helped create this beautiful work entitled Stone Soup.  What an amazing job they did.
 Then it's our turn to help create cooperative art.  We have square 47 to fill in on a large chalk mural.

  *photo by Sylvia

 I think we did a very fine job.  Shall we wander some more?  We watch bees and flowers on stilts perform a dance.  Shall we stop and chat with one of the folks from Echo Valley Farm?  We also run into plenty of folks that we know from the homeschool co-op, and from Aldo Leopold Nature Center, and even some old neighbors from when our oldest children were just wee little ones.  Even if they are widespread, it feels like community here.
 Hungry?  Time for lunch.  So many appetizing (and healthy!) things to chose from.  Ayla and I share a vegetarian plate of marinated olives and garlic, heirloom tomato salad with feta, and soba noodles with veggies, peanut sauce, black sesame seeds, and roasted almonds (for only $5, I might add).

 Sylvia goes for an organic hamburger, also with heirloom tomatoes.  Yum.  There's live fiddle, banjo, and guitar music in the eating tent for our listening pleasure

Back to wandering.  Hoops?  Of course.

And our first (of many) visits to the Honeycomb kids activity tent.  Sylvia will go back several times throughout the day to squeeze these synthetic udders.  According to a dairy farmer they have a very realistic feel to them and I am surprised by how much effort it takes to squeeze out the liquid.

 And do you want to make bee's wings to wear?  Paint them up. We'll come back for them after they dry.

 While we're crafting, shall we make willow crowns, too?  Yes!  We'll also enjoy the free hemp granola bars, string cheese, and Envirokidz crispy rice bars.  How nice!  We brought a jar along to fill and re-fill with fresh cool water.  Gotta stay hydrated.
 Oh, and roll our own beeswax candles?  Mmm-hm.

 Let's stop and watch the jugglers a bit.
 Let's stroll through this shady tunnel.  And back.  Again.  Again.
  Running a little low on energy?  Organic maple cotton candy ought to give a quick boost :)
 Let's go splash in the misty water spray tent.  See that puddle in the back?  It might be a good place to roll around.  Just ask Sylvia.  We should come back here, oh about half-a-dozen more times today to cool off.  That'll do.
  Back to the hula hoops,
 or maybe just watch sister hoop while we sit in the shade and chat up more families from the homeschool co-op.

The 64 square cooperative chalk mural is complete! 
Isn't is beautiful?  Let's walk all the way around it and view it from every angle.

 Round about this time we pick up the bee's wings, Ayla falls asleep in the carrier, and we watch the beginning of a play titled Farmscape.  We stare lengthily at a bee hive display and Sylvia asks questions about the queen back at the main hive.  We discover the Organic Valley pantry tent with free samples of chocolate milk, creamy iced coffee, and full sized tomato pesto grilled cheese sandwiches.  No pictures.  Too busy enjoying.  Sylvia spends about 30 more minutes flitting between those fascinating udders to squeeze and the sunflowers to 'pollinate' them, of course, since she is a bee-princess-nature-fairy-country-girl.

The sun.  It's hot.  And little legs are tired.  The live music on the main stage and the fire dancers and all of the other glorious booths and demonstrations and foods and entertainment will be enjoyed by others, but seven hours have gone by and we're ready to get back home before dark.  Did we have fun?  Yes, yes, and YES.  I hope you did, too.

our unschooling journey


  1. Awesome!!! We miss that Fair sooooo much! Did you try any Wisco Pop??? We know the people that make it, but we never tried it! Good times! Good pictures. Thanks for the memories!! Lots of Love from the Rayes!!!

    1. We didn't try the Wisco Pop. There were so many other choices, but I saw those folks there. I think this year is the first of many for us. I see why you loved it so much :)

  2. That looks like the BEST fair EVER!!! What a lovely post!

  3. btw I really wish you'd get rid of word verification, I find those captcha things sooooo annoying x

    1. Chloe, done. I thought I'd already disabled it, so I'm glad you mentioned it :)


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