Crazy for the Fair

This time of year, is one of my favorite. In Hutchinson, KS, where I grew up, it is time for the Kansas State Fair. This is both an exciting time and busy time for the town. Despite the influx of horrendous drivers, the chance of never finding a parking place, and need to avoid certain parts of town for ten days, I have nothing but fond memories of the fair.

Many of my fair memories do not even involve the typical fair smorgasbord of activities, such as rides, food, and walking the exhibits. The best ones are while I was sitting in the bank in the administration office.

Photos courtesy of Christine Gable. Kids at Kansas State Fair 2016.

For years, my grandma worked in the bank at the fair. When I was little my parents passed my brother and I though the windows to get treats from her. As I got older and my mom started working at the bank during fair time, I would use it as a hub. All my friends knew where to find me or they would meet me outside the front by the train station.

Across the hall was the highway patrol office, and there was always an officer sitting in the room snacking or just waiting for the next run. The room next door had the ticket office that was a bundle of activity. These room were my childhood.

I still remember my grandma sitting at the large table counting money or working on the report. They had an old pop machine where anyone could get real glass bottles for $.50 and there was always snacks. There were so many people that I grew up with in that room. I miss it now that the building has been remodeled. I always expect to walk in and see the room of my childhood, even though I know it is gone.

There is always so much to do at the fair. There are rides, of course, but there is also the butter sculpture, birthing barn, fair food (I like the pronto pups and roasted corn), and of course the pig races. Each time at the fair is a new experience. There are new people to see, new booths to explore, stuff to buy.

This year, the kids get to experience something new. They are going on the Old Mill, which is a ride that has been around since as long as I can remember. The Old Mill is a boat ride through a dark tunnel. While it is intended to be scary, and I’m sure it will be for the kids, it is a ride that people flock to each year to see how the theme has changed.

The Kansas State Fair is one of the best place to make memories that will last a lifetime. I am grateful that I could experience it for so many years, and I look forward to make many more memories with the family. If you would like to check out what going on at the fair visit webpage at


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