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I freakin’ heart the LA County Fair like there’s no tomorrow. Honestly, it’s one of my top three favorite days of the year (maybe even before Halloween and Thanksgiving). If you are a fair addict like me, you know what I’m talking about. But for those of you are thinking “what?” let me just explain some of the joys of a county fair.
The food: This is the one day of the year that I give no thought to diet, heart-health or any of that boring nonsense. It’s all about consuming the most crap as humanly possible. And for me, that means fried food. If you’re not in the know, there’s a new fried delicacy every year (if not four or five). I’m pretty sure there must be some sort of secret meeting somewhere in the Midwest where the fry masters ask “what shall we fry this year?” I had heard that fried butter was making the rounds this year, but it hasn’t made it to California yet. (Fried butter, I’ll see you next year.) This year, as is the case with all years, I ate an alarming number of fried things. The best new item? The Zucchini Weenie! A hollowed out zucchini, stuffed with a hot dog, put on a stick (of course!) then battered and fried. Delicious. Other star items included a deep fried avocado served with ranch dressing and the gold standard, fried cheese.
But along with the good, always comes the bad. Deep fried cheesecake sounds like it should be awesome. And it is, for exactly one bite. By bite five, it was rather sickening. But perhaps the worst was the Fried White Castle cheeseburger (that’s the monstrosity top left in the above photos). It’s not just that the hamburger patty is fried. The whole burger, bun and all, is dipped in batter and fried. It’s absolutely disgusting. I think I got a pimple just looking at it.
The rides: I am not the rider that I used to be. I’ve found in the past 5 years I reach the point of queasiness a lot faster than I once did. I have never liked to spin, even as a child. The teacups? The swings? Bleuch, you can keep ’em. I do, however, love to go fast and to go high. There has been a ride called Speed at the LA County Fair for the past 4 years (and I would imagine it makes the round to all fairs) that is the pinnacle of fast and high. I scream till I’m horse, it’s amazing.
There always seems to be at least one ride that leaves me slightly battered. I do bruise easy, but some of them throw you around with such force that I’m sure I’m not the only one in pain. As a matter of fact, we rode one this year that fair partner Eric termed “The Nard Crusher”. I’ll let you ponder that for a moment…
The animals: This is an easy one to understand. Baby farm animals! That you can pet. And feed. For a city slicker, yet goat-obsessed person like me, it’s pure heaven. A favorite spot of mine is the Bottle Nursery, where orphan baby pigs, calves, goats, and lambs nurse milk from bottles. If you didn’t just say “awww”, there’s something wrong with you. The LA County Fair also has something that they call Bark Park, a grassy section of the fair that they fill with puppies and toys. Seriously, what could be more fun?
The shopping: The shopping at the fair is out of control. There must be at least 6 huge pavilions filled with vendors. And that’s not even counting all the vendors scattered through the park. This year was a big year for $2 jewelery. Sadly, it looks as cheap as its price. And as always, there were a gazillions items “As Seen on TV”. I am a sucker for anyone selling something via a headset microphone and a demonstration. Mops, sham wows, knives that cut through cans; I own them all courtesy of the fair.
All this plus Animatronic Dinosaurs (new this year), the beer garden, the wine tasting, the Splash Dog show and so much more. I woke up the next day with the sign of a successful 12 hours spent at the fair (yes, 12), a fair hangover. It’s unlike any other and it stems from too much of everything; queasy from food and drink, slightly black and blue, sore legs, a bag full of stuff that I “needed” and not a cent to my name. I’m already excited for the next one!
For more fair photos, including pics of $2 jewelery, the Nard Crusher, baby animals, fried food and more-visit the we heart this facebook photo gallery. And hey, if you’re not a fan of us on Facebook already-please become one!
The LA County Fair continues through October 4th.