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Baa Baa black sheep have you any wool….

October 27, 2008

Marge and I went to the NY State Sheep and Wool Festival the other weekend.  After crossing the Kingston-Rhinecliff Bridge, we turned on to Route 9G, a single lane road.  The traffic was bumper to bumper.  I said to Marge, “there is no way that all these people are going to the wool festival”.  We inched our way to Route 9. The 3 mile trek to the Dutchess County Fair Ground entrance taking about 30 minutes.  And yes, almost EVERY car turned into the festival.  Who knew that wool and sheep were so popular.

We parked, paid the entrance fee and walked into the fair grounds.  The place was packed !  The barns were full of vendors selling wool in every state imaginable; straight off the sheep; ready to be spun; ready to be dyed; and balls of yarn.  There was every color under the rainbow.  There were spinning wheels, carding devices, and looms for sale. It was a tactile fantasy to touch all the wool.  Some was softer than silk.  There was a yarn that had bamboo fibers mixed in with wool. Another had a sea grass fiber mixed in.

The range and variety of materials was overwhelming.  I purchased a ball of mulitcolor sock yarn, #2 double point needles and a pattern to knit beginner socks.  I could have easily bought a lot of yarn and accessories and it was difficult to stop at just the one ball.  But without patterns in mind, I might have ended up with lots of wool in my stash bag without and idea of what to do with it.

There were sheep exhibits.  Having studied farm animal nursing in college, I am familiar with your standard run of the mill white Dorset sheep.  There were all kinds of beautiful sheep.  There were 2 animals that looked to be sheep, but were the size of a small cow.  There was a lot of activity in the sheep barn as the livestock was being prepared for either showing or auctioning.

The best show was in the ladies restroom next to the main entrance.  First, the facility was immaculate. The cleaning crew where I work should be sent here to learn what a clean rest room looks like.  And there was entertainment.  The attendant was hysterical.  She called out rhymes like:

“I know you’re in a rush, but don’t forget to flush!”
“If you don’t see feet, take a seat!”
“If you gotta go, let it flow”
“If you got to pee, this is the place to be!”
“Don’t worry about your seat, cuz I’m keeping it neat”
“Where would the world be if ladies couldn’t pee?”
“Thank you for coming to the ladies room! Come again, bring a friend.”
“The lady in blue, keeping things neat for you!”

The fall foliage, the crisp air, fair food (had to have fried dough), made for a great Sunday outing.  We’ll have to do this again next year.

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