The roosters were at the fair.

August 18, 2013: All of life moves on, the summer, the seasons, time. And I felt like, for a while, art just did not fit in until, well today. In taking pause, I remember a trip we made to the fair this last month.

The idea was planted when a man working the counter at the tractor supply store told my daughter that we should go visit a real country fair and make the trip out to the thumb. My daughter excited, we proposed the idea to my husband when we got home and made plans for the weekend.

Going to the fair is not foreign to me. As a kid, I had owned and showed rabbits and chickens at the county fair. My sister and I would spend every day at the fair taking care of our animals and making our way up and down the fairway. It was a kind of celebration for a year’s worth of work, keeping those animals alive during the hot summer days and during the cold January nights. And there were rides to boot! The community came out to celebrate, maybe not our triumphs, but to follow in the yearly tradition of the rides and elephant ears and derby. It was a fun time for me as a kid.

The smells and sights nearly completed the memory that I had of the fair and the experiences that I had as a kid. My daughter was instantly in love. She savored every moment. My husband is convinced 4H would be a good choice for her.

We walked the animal barns. In fact we walked the animal barns three times. I have since asked my daughter what her favorite part was. She reports the Ferris wheel. Although, she was afraid to ride it at first, edging around it until curiosity got the best of her. We ended up riding it over and over again that day. She also reports she liked the cows, rabbits and chickens. I understand why with the cow. We did moo at one and it *did* moo back. The chickens were wonderful. The small-stock barn was over filled with rabbits and chickens, a testimony to the resiliency of country people making due during a recession. The roosters crowed the entire time. Even in the heat they would stand and crow, challenging each other over and over. The roosters were fun to watch. In remembrance, I have created The Rooster, in pan watercolors. I am out of practice, but it was fun to paint!

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The Rooster, by Mary Champagne, done in pan watercolors

Edit: I have updated The Rooster picture, with one that is the dried version photographed in natural daylight. Enjoy!

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