Albemarle County Fair Opens

The Tornado
The Albemarle County Fair started its six day run last night. It’s open from 4pm-11pm this week, 10am-11pm on Saturday, and 1pm-6pm on Sunday. The catalog / program is available online, but you’ll find all of the things you’d expect, from a pie eating contests to rides, bluegrass to livestock exhibitions. It’s just ten minutes south of town on 29, and admission is $7 for adults, $3 for kids, and free for kids 5 and under.

Silvia’s family entered a whole mess of stuff and has a photo album of their visit to the fair last night. It looks like they won some ribbons!

20 Responses to “Albemarle County Fair Opens”

  • I love the fair! Remember the ginormous cow last year? The baby pigs? I can’t wait to go this weekend!

  • I haven’t been to a County Fair in more than two decades. I can’t imagine they’ve changed much (biggest ‘maters & such). Prices sure seem reasonable in these inflated times. Enjoy, Fair-goers!

  • I went to the fair once. Got scared by a clown. Then went to the animal exhibit and stepped in some cow poop. Next were the rides where I barfed up some cotton candy after a particularly rough churn in the Zipper. After that I tried some of the carnival games and got gypped at the ring toss. The final stop was the hoochie-coochie show, but I couldn’t get in because I was underage. Can’t wait to take my kids!

  • Nice picture. What camera and settings did you use?

  • Thanks! That was shot on a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT (the 8MP model), 400 ISO, at 1/60 of a second, with flash. I had a little help, too — immediately to my left was the big pirate ship ride, swinging back and forth overhead, equipped with a pair of bright lights that shone onto the kids on this ride twice every ten seconds or so. The trick was timing the photos to take advantage of that occasional lighting. I had to take about fifty pictures to get three where the timing was right.

  • Hey, did anyone else notice that Waldo got a Ribbon at the fair for one of his photos?

  • This is true, I did. :) It was my first time entering any photos in any competitions, and I was happy to get a few. I think I got a couple of blue ribbons and a few second and third place showings. Over on the Charlottesville Flickr group, I encouraged some other folks to enter photos. Did anybody else enter?

  • I remember wishing I had known how to enter photos when we saw the winners last year. I’ll pay more attention next year.

    Congrats, Waldo!

  • Thanks for the mention. And now I know why you won so many ribbons for your photos–50 pics to get 3 good ones! Plus, I think I need to upgrade my camera. :) I wanted to spend more time in the home arts tent to examine all the photos and other entries, but my family kept dragging me toward the rides!

  • Does the $7 admission cover rides or does it just get you in?

  • It just gets you in. The cost of rides varies from ride to ride, though you can get a “ride all day” pass. I don’t know how much the pass costs, but if you stop at the Crossroads Store on the way (across the street from the turn off 29), they have coupons to save something like $7 on ’em.

  • Carnival rides. Usually they are disassembled, moved and then reassembled by drunk, ex-con, drop-out carnies about once every week or two. These things are so incredibly unsafe that I really don’t understand why anyone would be willing to get on them, let alone allow their children to ride them.

    They miss a bolt, lose a part or so. Maybe forget to tighten something up fully. Again, the whole thing gets taken down and moved several times each month. There are just so many opportunities for these hung-over, unskilled people to miss something or make a mistake.

    I met an underwriter once at an insurance convention who specialized in writing carnival rides. And you would not believe the horror stories. She said that every time they did an inspection on these things they would find pieces missing, badly rusted or put together wrong. The rate of accidents is way, way higher than on rides at amusement parks where regular maintenance is performed and actual engineers are usually employed to ensure safety.

    The way it often works is that a ride is owned by someone in the name of XYZ LLC. They insure it, someone(s) gets hurt, some more people get hurt, they rack up the claims and then when they become uninsurable they start a new LLC and sell the still-faulty equipment to themselves in the new LLC and then start all over again with a clean slate. This way they can run an unsafe piece of equipment for years even though people are getting hurt without ever having to actually replace something that could cost them $50,000 or more (depending on the ride).

    I’m not saying that every carnival operator is crooked or that every ride is unsafe. Just that enough of them are that anyone with sense should stay the hell away from them.

  • I think the carnival ride topic was covered last year. I’ve been afraid of most rides since I was in middle school and noticed that the operater of a ferris wheel I was on only 1/2 loaded it when there was a big, long line of people waiting.

    I can’t resist The Scrambler, though. I love that thing!

    Now, this won’t be complete until someone talks about the games being fixed. I believe that was also covered here last year. :)

  • These things always remind me of that part in the Disney ‘Pinocchio’ movie right before Pinocchio starts to turn into a donkey.

  • If you’re a car registration scofflaw (or just forgetful) and it’s like in recent years, if your car has anything expired (inspection, tags, county sticker, etc), you can expect a ticket if you park at the Fair.

    The games are fixed?

  • The games are fixed?

    Scroll down to the comment from Kempis in the post about the 2006 fair.

  • We went tonight and had a great time. Our daughter is old enough now to really appreciate the animals. However, never mind the potential danger of the carnival rides – stay away from the pad thai!

  • Spammer “Daniel” is at it again…

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