‘Still kickin’ at age 101: Multnomah County Fair

You’re invited to the “fun, family fair” May 26‚ 28. Read this and discover all the reasons you should plan a visit this year‚

The magical Mother Goose will entertain kids of all ages at this year’s Multnomah County Fair at Oaks Park.

Story and archive photos by David F. Ashton
Against overwhelming odds, and without financial assistance from the county, the 101st edition of the Multnomah County Fair kicks off in late May at Oaks Amusement Park.

“‘We’re Still Kickin’ Get your kicks at the 101st Multnomah County Fair’ is our theme,” says the fair’s coordinator, Cheryl Jones.

The fair is a safe place for young people to learn how food gets from the farm to their table.

“It’s a great deal for families,” Jones tells us. “Admission and parking is free. People of all ages will enjoy the activities and events scheduled this year.” She adds that heaps of contests, prizes, exhibits, demonstrations, good friends and good times make this a popular and traditional gathering.
Pirate shows to musical acts

Those rascally “Pirates at the Beach” scallywags will be back this year in full costume, doing pirate shows.

Be sure to see Humphrey’s Farmyard Frolics‚ with the magical Mother Goose and a dozen farm-themed activities for the kids.

“We’ve booked musical and other entertainment acts,” Jones says.

A wide variety of food vendors cook up hot meals the whole family will enjoy.

Contests galore
Many categories for competition feature special awards for items designed around this year’s theme. In addition to arts-and-crafts judging, this year’s fair will include:

  • A professionally-judged rabbit competition and show;
  • The “Big Cluck” chicken cook-off hosted by “Mr. Barbeque“;
  • Cowboy Boot Contest — Grab your old cowboy boots and decorate them to win a trophy; and,
  • Weiner Dog races ‚Äì the winner gets a year’s supply of Hill’s Science Diet.

See craftspeople create beautiful works of art‚ right before your eyes.

Silent auction supports fair
In The Pavilion, check out some of the great items up for auction: dinner for 8, cooked by a chef in your home; wheelbarrows of gardening supplies; beach vacations; gift baskets and much more.

“The items will be on display on May 27,” says Jones, “and the bids close on May 28.

KXL’s “Mr. Barbeque” will host another “Big Cluck Chicken Cookoff” at the fair on May 26.

Fun and educational
The Multnomah County Fair is still an important institution, Jones explains, so city-dwellers can get a taste of country life.

She adds, “The fair is a place to learn and explore. Having a place where arts, crafts, agriculture and livestock can be judged encourages young people to participate in positive activities‚ arts and crafts.”

And, Jones reminds us, rides at Oaks Amusement Park are reasonably-priced‚ unlike the rides at traveling carnivals.

You can help
“We need community-minded people to help us produce the Fair,” says Jones. “You can contribute a little time or a lot. Please call the Friends of the Fair at 503-761-7577 and volunteer.”

Thrill rides at Oaks Park provide fun and excitement for the whole family‚ at an affordable price.

101st Multnomah County Fair
Saturday through Monday: May 26, 27, & 28, 2007
Hours: Noon – 7:00 PM
Oaks Amusement Park
7100 SE Oaks Park Way
at the foot of SE Spokane St., Sellwood.
For more information, see the Fair’s website: www.neighborhoodlink.com/org/multcofair

We’ll see you at the 2007 Multnomah County Fair!

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

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