Friday, September 14, 2007

Johnny Appleseed and the kids do grow up

Tomorrow and Sunday is the Johnny Appleseed Festival, one of our favorites. We missed Grabill last weekend--guests in town, and just couldn't make it out. Luckily Jayme and Tony got to go, and brought back backs of caramel corn, which smelled heavenly and tasted even better.
I don't remember ever being at Johnny Appleseed when it was cold--and just a few times when it was wet. Surely this third weekend in September must be one of the highest percentage weekends to be sunny and warm. Some years, downright hot.
And I'm wondering about the mosquitoes, given the late blooming of the crop this year. We've fought a lot of bees out there over the years. I'm wondering if there will be a counterattack by the little divebombers this year.
I'm sure that folks will be shoulder to shoulder. If we're lucky, we'll get to see and hear both the fife-and-drum band, and the bagpipers. Isn't it amazing that in 2007, so many people still want to dress up and play these old tunes?
We'll pause by the music stages and listen to the folk music for minute.
We'll wander by the trappers and traders, the military re-enactors, the antiques, the produce, especially the apples and chrysanthemums.
We'll check out the ingenious rides the Boy Scouts have constructed this year, and help the little girls with a ride and a kids' craft.
We'll climb the hill and walk around the grave (is he there?) of John Chapman himself, and someone will have placed flowers and apples inside the little iron fence.
We'll shop a little--all the crafts, the wood carvers and tole painters and dried flower arrangers, the weavers and tinsmiths and candle-makers.
And we'll eat. Angela and Jayme will be working in the big tent serving pap, and we'll go in there and say hi. But we'll hit the Homestead Music Boosters for sure, and the caramel apples, and maybe some more popcorn. And some old-fashioned root beer.
We'll be pushing strollers, filled with pretty little girls who will want to get out and play and be held and eat whatever it is we're eating.
And I'll remember the first little kids I pushed around this festival, the pretty little girl and sturdy little boy who wanted to eat some sugar candy and ride the spinning ride and watch the "mans shoot the guns" on the hillside. The little kids who are now the stroller-pushers, not the riders, buying the candy sticks and wiping the sticky faces and remembering festivals past.

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