Fun times at the county fair

By GARRETT NEESE

gneese@mininggazette.com

GREENLAND – Another successful Ontonagon County Fair is in the books.

The festival, held Saturday and Sunday in Greenland, included exhibits, livestock, a wine contest, a kids rodeo and more.

Lori Wardynski was in one of the barns Saturday afternoon brushing her cattle. She’s been coming to the fair since she was born. She started showing animals as a 5-year-old, graduating from pigs and horses to Simmental cattle, which she’s been doing for the past five years.

“It’s like a kid’s way of being in the beef industry,” said Wardynski, who also shows cattle in the U.P. State Fair.

She likes having so many people be able to learn more about farm animals.

“All the people always bring their kids and everything,” she said. “Not everybody gets to see farm animals every day, but they get to see the animals and ask questions.”

In the exhibit hall, entries were on display in a variety of categories, encompassing birdhouses, quilts, pizza sauce and flowers.

Taking in the exhibits was Patsy May of Trout Creek, who comes to the fair every year. While she liked looking at them, her favorite part is the annual assortment of antique farm equipment.

“It reminds me of how I grew up,” she said. “When I grew up, that’s what it was all about. They did have produce at the fair, but it was all about farming equipment, what you used, new and old. It was a social gathering, which it still is.”

Of the fair that exists now, she said, “they’re doing a fantastic job.”

Outside, people strolled around looking at vendors and farm equipment; children rode by on a red, white and blue train.

A band played in the gazebo, trading vocals and wisecracks.

“We’re going to play a song I haven’t played in abut 120 years,” said Jack Jolliff.

“You look about that old,” said guitarist Pete Anttila.

Sitting in the shade were Keith and Linda Sopp of Green Bay, Wisconsin. They enjoy walking around to the different booths and talking to people. At the moment, they were waiting for their grandchildren, 8 and 10, who were looking at the animals.

“We’re just sitting here and relaxing while the kids have something to do, walking around,” he said.

Greg Duncan of Bruce Crossing was also showing animals at the fair, including chickens and a rabbit. In addition to showing animals, he also likes participating in contests such as watermelon eating.

“I just got Grand Champion on my rabbit, got second place in the watermelon eating contest and won the egg toss,” he said.