Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Blue Hill Fair, August 30, 2013

This year for the first time ever, I went to the Blue Hill Fair without children in tow, so I finally got to see all the competitions and demonstrations they think are boring. First thing in the morning were the Four-Ox Distance Pulls - each team of four oxen had 5 minutes to pull a heavy load as many times around the ring as possible. The team that went farthest won. The animals didn't seem to mind pulling the load, but they weren't keen on going in a straight line, and one team attempted to head right out the gate. The owners had their hands full shouting orders, pulling on yokes, and poking rumps to get the oxen moving in the right direction. It looked exhausting for them but was very entertaining for the rest of us.
The draft horse competition was similar, except the horses had already mastered the going-in-a-straight-line concept, so it was more impressive than entertaining. They were able to pull even more weight than the oxen were, which surprised me. People always use the phrase, "Strong as an ox," but it ought to be, "Strong as a draft horse."
 The draft horses' hooves are enormous - bigger than my hand.
Another memorable exhibit was a demonstration of goat milking.

 The goats seemed very cheerful.
In between competitions, I wandered the midway and took the usual country fair photos.
 I even stumbled across a couple of people painting the scene:
Then I had fried clams, lemonade, and maple-sugar-cotton-candy, and went home stuffed and slightly sunburnt. Can't wait 'til next year!

P.S. Don't worry, I took my kids to the fair the next day.


  1. Looks like you had a great time, and had time to take these wonderful photos without kids in tow! I love that shot of the draft horses really doubling down to pull, and the shot of their shoes with those "cleats" on the back - never seen that before. You captured the essence of the fair with all these photos. :)

    1. I'd never noticed the shoes before, either, but then I never took this much time to really look. You see very different things when you travel with kids - often times I meet people and see things I wouldn't have without them - but going on my own I can move much more slowly.