Get out this week and check out the fair

Published 9:57 am Tuesday, August 4, 2015

I didn’t grow up in Albert Lea, but after living here for nine years, it has become a tradition of sorts to attend the Freeborn County Fair — usually a couple times for work, once with my children and once with my husband for a date night at one of the concerts.

I have fond memories of attending a fair where I grew up in Virginia, and I remember that the first thing I ever loved about fairs in general was the rides.

Not exposed to much agricultural living growing up, I didn’t look too much at the animals.

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As a teenager, my friends and I would ride all of the craziest rides — such as the Zipper — multiple times and of course socialize and walk around. While I can handle most rides, I found out that the rides that go in a circular motion make me a little nauseous. One time I even had a bad experience after walking off a ride. I will spare you the details, but needless to say, I stay away now from rides that go in a circular motion.

When I moved to Albert Lea and started attending the Freeborn County Fair, I gained more of an appreciation for the agricultural part of the fair and for all of the hard work that goes into 4-H projects and other exhibits.

Having not been around animals much in my lifetime, it’s interesting to see them up close and personal.

My children, too, have enjoyed simply walking around and looking at all of the animals that we don’t normally see on a daily basis.

They learn about them and see them more often from a distance, but seeing them there that close takes things to a whole new level.

One night at the fair, my husband usually accompanies me to a concert as all of the editorial staff take turns writing a review of the entertainers.

Though neither my husband or I would pick country as our favorite type of music, it’s fun to get out and be in the crowds and to see different entertainers. A few years when there were rock groups at the fair, we’d try to pick them to cover!

Over the years, we’ve seen everybody from country music star Kellie Pickler to Canadian-based rock band Finger Eleven and Oklahoma City-based rock group Hinder.

Last summer we saw Canadian country star Terri Clark.

This year, I will be attending the Josh Turner concert tonight, which I’m hearing is expected to have outstanding attendance.

In addition to the concerts, the Tribune will have editorial staff out at the fairgrounds each day of the fair, and we will feature something different each day in the newspaper. Of course, if any other newsy types of events happen there throughout the week, we will cover them as well.

With the weather expected to be mild this week, that makes for even better fair weather.

Get out and check it out!


Sarah Stultz is the managing editor of the Albert Lea Tribune.