Labor Day Weekend Is For Family!
I hope my little note finds you well and not going stir crazy. It’s Father’s Day and because my folks are elderly and have some health concerns, I can only offer them an “air hug”. Social distancing – something I hope we are able to throw on the trash heap of history… soon. But for now, I guess this is the world we live in. With this virus changing the world, coupled with the rioting taking place across our country, we are fortunate to live where we do. So as we awaken each day, let’s try and find something to be grateful for – even if it’s something as small as waking up to only one pile of dog crap (rather than the usual 3-4) on the new carpet. I’ll take the victories where I can find ‘em.
In the words of Maine comedian Bob Marley, “Crona watch 2020 day 121” … our little fair still hangs tough. Not much has changed since the last update. We continue to plan for the Springfield Fair on September 4 & 5. Until we are told otherwise, by the State, we will hold out hope and plan on offering the 170th edition of the Ole Fayuh. But, make no mistake, if we are told that we cannot operate in 2020 – we will not be able to open. We don’t want anyone to get sick because of the fair (although hangovers will not fall in this category) plus there are liability concerns which, in this day and age of lawyer’s encouraging frivolous lawsuits, we must take into account.
We have had many comments from supporters who are also hoping that we will be open, along with a few who feel that we are selfish for keeping our dream alive and asking for us to cancel now. Sorry guys – not pulling the plug yet. In addition to maintaining our efforts to hold Springfield Fair 2020, I continue to try and book a concert for Sept. 26th. Again, it all depends on how the State reacts these upcoming months. Yes, if we have a concert – it will be free because of the generous sponsorship offer of a local person who wants to show their appreciation for how our area has moved through the pandemic. And, they are showing their appreciation for the transformation of our little fair over these last 30 years. There will be no admittance fee but we will still need to charge for parking, food and beer (the sponsor insisted that we offer beer sales… yahoo!!)
If you have been fortunate enough to travel to the big city (Springfield) lately, perhaps you noticed a few improvements to the fairgrounds. We have a brand new ice cream concession building and we are in the midst of completing a number of much needed improvements, including roofing a barn, jacking and leveling a few buildings and tearing the front off one of the barns and rebuilding it. We are also turning our beano hall into a boat storage building. For those of you who aren’t aware, we store boats in the winter months. This renovation will allow us to have space for another 4-6 boats. If you are looking for boat storage – call me at 738-2888 and leave a message.
My understanding is that we are one of only four fairs “still standing”. That’s sad. Although I certainly understand the problems with holding out, for us, it’s worth the risk. Please know that we truly want to be here for you. Springfield Fair offers a respite from the pressures of day to day living. We are a hearty breed who inhabit the North Country. Few of us are getting rich. The bugs (now we include ticks) are a pain in the ass. They’ll only let us take 2 trout in most lakes but the cost of a fishing license stays high. A 6 pack of bud is $8-9!! (Really?) We lost all of our spring and summer sports seasons. Our kids lost the end of their school years, graduation, prom, etc. etc. And to make matters worse I’m trying to teach my eleven year old about history – a topic that, sadly, is being rewritten by some educators and not reflective of the history we were taught in the 60’s and 70’s.
Yes, life in rural Maine can be a challenge. But I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Being a fat, little redneck from Patten – transplanted to Lee – via a 2 year tour of our great country, helps me to appreciate the small joys in life… sitting in a boat while drowning a worm with an ice cold beer between my legs, watching my son hit the outside corner with a helluva fastball, my wife not teasing me about my “man titties”, my boss letting me show up to work in stained shorts with 4 days of growth of beard and a bad attitude. And holding out hope that the 170th Springfield Fair will be a real thing. Once again, in the words of Bob Marley “we love you all – have a great day!”