Feeling thankful at fair time

By Melanie Yingst

It’s officially Miami County Fair time. The lambs are weighed in. Forms have been filled out.

No one was injured or cut out of the will during the transportation process that I know of.

Each year, it seems like things go a little smoother than before. Knock on wood.

So far, the most pressing issue has been a blister from new shoes. And of course, I don’t have Band-Aids. I think we’ll make it through the week.

It takes a lot of work and preparation just to make it this far and to enjoy the activities throughout the week.

So I’d like to write a few Thank You Notes in Jimmy Fallon style to show my appreciation to everyone who makes the Miami County Fair a fun and enjoyable week for all of us:

Thank you to whomever leaves their hose and spray nozzle in the wash rack all week. While we, too, have our wash supplies, you leave yours to use all week long without worry.

Thank you to the person who made the “No Animals in the Restroom” sign possible. Personally, I’ve love to hear this story because it’s one of my favorite signs on the fair grounds.

Speaking of signs — thank you, Cove Springs Grange, for never erasing “Tray Window” and its white chalk arrow. While the ‘O’ is fading, I’m just happy those letters have remained untouched for generations by those who have slid that cafeteria tray down the line each and every fair.

Thank you, Cove Springs Grange, for your Saturday Chicken Bake. It has enough calories in that one heaping plateful to sustain the week’s worth of energy it takes to survive the fair. One dish does it all and I look forward to it each year.

Thank you, Cove Springs Grange, for serving up delicious home cooked meals so my son know what that actually tastes like once a year. It’s love on a cafeteria tray. Maybe you guys should get that phrase on a t-shirt. I’d buy one with a side of beets and eggs.

Thank you, Brian Swank, for letting Evan and me crash in your camper all week. I’m not so sure about our neighbors, though.

Thank you obnoxious, County Road 25-A traveler, for laying on the horn as you drive by the fairgrounds at 4 a.m. You truly are a menace to society.

Thank you, harness races, for making sure I lose $20 each evening by betting on “Philly Cheesestakes” or “Somebeachsomewhere” for the win just because I liked the name.

Thank you, 4-H Club advisers, for doing all the prep work like hanging club signs, reserving pens and making sure all the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed. You make it easy on scatterbrained folks like me to just show up with lambs in hand. I do, however, provide the ink pens to fill out all the forms during weigh-in.

Thank you, Mark Deeter, for letting us borrow your lamb stand and scales all summer long. The stand has reduced the frustration levels and threat of injury for all parties involved. For this, we are grateful for your generosity.

Thank you, Dad, for traveling to Miami Valley Feed and Grain to buy feed each week. We couldn’t do all this without your help.

Thank you, Shorty, my rescue dog, for herding the lambs and playing “Ring Man” as Evan practiced with his lambs each summer evening and providing much-needed comic relief when tensions ran high from an overbearing fair parent.

Thank you, Miami County Agriculture Society board members, for all your time and dedication each year. We all know you don’t get paid (the weekly golf carts don’t count), but you spend countless hours to make sure everyone enjoys their time out on the fairgrounds each year. Thank you for all you do.

And finally, thank you to sunglasses for hiding my tears of appreciation of all the sponsors and buyers on Thursday morning.


By Melanie Yingst

“Twin” Melanie Yingst appears weekly in the Troy Daily News.

“Twin” Melanie Yingst appears weekly in the Troy Daily News.