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Scenes from the Little World's Fair in Grahamsville
By Jason Dole
8/20/12 - 3:41 pm
8/20/12 - 3:41 pm
Above: 4-H Moo Juicer Brittney Burk of Bethel NY hangs with her pal Lily, a 4-month-old dairy cow at the 133rd Annual Little World’s Fair in Grahamsville. Young people bring their livestock, produce, and crafts for judging & exhibit days before the fair opens to the public. All photos by Jason Dole.
The Annual Little World’s Fair of the Neversink Agricultural Society in Grahamsville turned 133 this year. Yet even as the fair’s traditions get older, the experiences are always new. Every year, young people take part for the first time in the same fun that has been taking place there for generations.
While the blinking lights on the rides and the barkers at the midway games grab wildly for attention, the beating heart of the Little World’s Fair is always the Youth Fair and agricultural exhibits. 4-H-ers and Future Farmers of America bring their animals, produce, environmental exhibits, crafts and more for the community to see. Many arrive midweek and camp on the fairgrounds for the duration. And even a little Friday afternoon rain didn’t stop them from enjoying this year’s Little World’s Fair.
What would the fair be without rides? Here, Tayler Schwartz and Austin Frunzi take a spin on the hang-glider ride with Josh Schwartz (Tayler’s dad) from White Sulphur Springs.
At old-time fairs, snake handlers might speak in tongues. In Grahamsville, “Wildman” Jack DiMuccio of Kingston spoke clearly about his exotic reptiles, like this albino constrictor.
4-H covers a lot of ground. On this end of the Youth 4-H barn, winning produce sat on display. On the other end, Tri-Valley Central School Junior, FFA member, and worker with Sullivan County Soil & Water Conservation Steven Vogler used a working model to demonstrate human impact on stream flow and erosion.
A tense bunny moment: Amanda Depetro (left) of Pine Bush and others wait as American Rabbit Breeders Association Judge Don Havlicek (right) decides which rabbit will win Best In Show. The winner was a Tan named Joli owned by Paula Schutz of Pine Bush. Joli is the dark rabbit seen here standing up out of the box.
On Friday, the festivities paused as folks gathered for official fair business, including a flag raising and memorial tributes. Neversink Ag Society President Gary Ter Bush (center) handed out annual scholarships for youth who demonstrate leadership. Patrick McHugh won the Oland Erath Community Service Award and Elizabeth Bracken received the James Gorman Good Neighbor Award.
Troop 97 members Lawrence Bracken, Logan McKeon, and Robbie Mercado salute the flag they raised as Ashley Exner sings the national anthem. Exner just qualified for the FFA Chorus in Indianapolis, where she will sing in front of 50,000 people. After the anthem, the flag came down, followed immediately by lots of rain.
Marilyn Costa lost her husband of 54 years, Fred, in April. She began to choke up as fair officials dedicated the 133rd Fair to the memory of Fred, Don Hill, Don Ter Bush, and long time Neversink Ag Society Secretary Nancy Conjura. Luckily, Marilyn had her family at hand, including grandchildren Hope (in back), Colby, and Jordan Costa, and her son Craig Costa (right).
Hunter Calyer of Montgomery, NY competes in the tractor pull on 1968 Cub Cadet 104. A cloud burst followed the dedication ceremonies at the fair on Friday, but as soon as the rain slackened, the tractors got back to pulling.
Prize Every Time: Kevin Eaton of Jeffersonville and Brandon Hoover of Binghamton try their luck at the games on the fairway.
Nathaniel Edwards gets ready to make like Homer Simpson at the “Old Fashioned Fair Fun” games, sponsored by 4-H. Old-time events included the potato sack race and, yes, the donut-on-string contest.
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