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State Fairs

State Fairs are an American tradition, tied closely to our vast and diverse agricultural history.

Anyone can find fun at a fair. From jam making contests to pie eating contests, from equestrian shows to livestock competitions, from rock concerts to school band peformances. And then there are the rides, and the fireworks, and the food, and the... you get the picture.

I remember going to the fair on school day to perform with a class or just hang out with my friends. I remember the rides and the midway games. I loved the food and the fireworks. I went to my first concert at the state fair. I rode my first rollercoaster at the fair.

Perhaps you remember how well your rabbits did in the 4-H competitions or the pie that won you a blue ribbon.

This year is a first for me. I won a blue ribbon for a snapshot of my nephew at the Marin County Fair in San Rafael, California. One of my photographs was selected for the Photography Exhibition and my boys won several 2nd Place ribbons for their artwork and Lego creations. We even volunteered in our Boy Scout Council booth. (Actually, it's a tipi.)

Our experience this year was different, thanks to our active participation in the fair. But even if you're just going for the rides, the food, the concerts or the fireworks, the fair is a great family tradition to carry on, or to start.

Check out these State Fairs, or visit the sites listing County Fairs in your area. Everything you need to know, from admission rates to operating hours, is on each fair's website. the Marin County Fair

Washington

Evergreen State Fair in Monroe, WA
August 23 - September 3, 2007

Western Washington State Fair in Puyallup, WA
September 7 - 23, 2007

Central Washington State Fair in Yakima, WA
September 28 - October 7, 2007

County Fairs in Washington

Oregon

Oregon State Fair in Salem, OR
August 24 - September 3, 2007

Oregon Fairs Association

California

California State Fair in Sacramento, CA
August 17 - September 3, 2007

California Dept of Food & Agriculture

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