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Advertise on the Tentacle

September 29, 2003

Positives Overshadow Negatives At Great Frederick Fair

Bethany Stevenson

The tradition of the Great Frederick Fair, for me, did not become real until I had my own children. As a child myself, we did not start going until I was of the age to be only concerned about rides.

But my mother wanted me to be culturally enhanced by the exhibits. Of course, I was also old enough to make the trip miserable for her and my siblings until we got to the rides!

But when I became a mother, I had learned to appreciate art in it various forms, homemaking skills, and the exhibits of animal husbandry that could be experienced at the fair. So, early on, I made it a tradition to take my children every year to the fair and enjoy these local talents.

Now, we even enter our own exhibits into the fair, and love to look for the exhibits of our friends. We appreciate the work that goes into preparing something to enter, and especially appreciate it when someone receives a ribbon.

However, there has recently been in the local media a big hoopla about the executive board of the Great Frederick Fair, carnie families, whether so-n-so should remain in her position working with the fair board, etc. For the whole week of the fair there were very few stories about the good stuff of the fair. There were articles in relation to the hurricane.

My beef is there are hundreds of adults and children who spend hours and hours preparing exhibits that are neat and exciting. They are local; they are unique. But the media can only focus on the typical fair situation of a carnie family being left behind (who, it was discovered after the fact, had enough money to get them to their home).

The exhibits were wonderful. My own daughter made a paper chain that was 149 feet long with intentional color patterns throughout to symbolize different things.

One teen sewed a beautiful 15th century dress costume. There were several beautiful model cars, some from wood, some from metal and plastic.

Another child crocheted a beautiful afghan. Where do these kids get such marvelous talents?

In the adult section the quilts alone are masterpieces. They actually take years to complete.

Being a canner myself, I marvel at the ability of the cooks who enter in the beautiful jars of canned tomatoes and green beans. My jars never look so good!

So, my frustration is mounting towards the newspaper when all they can find to report on such a great event is negative things. It is no wonder that people are so negative these days; if the media focuses on the negative, then many others will too.

Focusing our own families and selves on the good of the fair then, we can enjoy the best that Frederick has to offer. And like my family, start our own traditions.

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