I've spent several weekends in my hometown this summer, and I returned last weekend for the Jackson County Fair. The house where I grew up (and where my parents still live) is just down the road from the fairgrounds and I looked forward to the fair each year, even if it meant summer was almost over. It was one of the summer highlights in our small town. We didn't have much in our little town, but we had the fair and the outdoor pool. The pool and its towers are long gone -- filled in for a campground next to the fairgrounds -- but the fair is still there each year, even if some of that childhood magic is gone.
It's probably not too surprising that my favorite part of the fair when I was growing up wasn't the animals, the rides, or the candy. It was going through all the old buildings. The old barbershop, the hotel lobby, the doctor and dentist office. And visiting the general store to buy old-fashioned candy (I guess I did like the candy afterall, which maybe makes me seem slightly more normal). It made me feel like Laura Ingalls, which was always an excellent thing (also normal, right?).
I've managed to avoid the fair for several years because I mistakenly thought I'd outgrown it. So it was particularly fun to walk through the buildings this year. It was fun to see the old horse-drawn school bus that my grandma very likely rode in as a girl on her way to the Petersburg school in the late 1910s and 1920s. I was also amazed at all the old items scattered through the buildings. I don't know who donated and collected all these items and who arranged them in the various rooms -- I'm guessing it was a process over many, many years -- but they did an amazing job. There were countless things that I would have loved to take home with me. Sadly there were no dart or ring toss games where you could win the vintage typewriter and file cabinets from the old law office (something for the fairboard to consider for next year?). Instead I just took a bunch of photos and my intstagrams are below.
And in case you're wondering about the blue and orange floral pattern below, it is a photo of the original linoleum kitchen floor in an old farmhouse that was moved to the fairgrounds. Ok, you probably aren't wondering about it, but yes, I would install that in my kitchen tomorrow.
And that bedroom? I'm ready to move right in.
I'm already looking forward to going back next year.
And finally on a completely different note, I am excited to announce that some of my prints are now available at Paper Hat, an amazing shop in Minneapolis located at 50th and Penn. The store is full of super cool art and great handmade items and gift ideas. I have been a big fan of this store for some time, so it's super cool that my prints are now for sale alongside all those other great items. This is the first time that my prints are for sale in a shop, so it is a big milestone for me. I hope it is the first of many! More excitement is coming in a few months for me at Paper Hat so there will be more updates soon.