This is the week we celebrate the best of summer, with the Fourth of July. Some 236 years ago, an assembly of extraordinarily courageous visionaries challenged the most powerful military force on the Atlantic Ocean by declaring independence from the monarchy of Great Britain.
The nation they established was unlike any other at that time, a Constitutional Democratic Republic based upon personal liberty. This nation would create a standard of living beyond anything the world had ever seen, by fostering the potential of each citizen to apply individual talents and efforts. Competition for productivity and excellence combined with a sense of public cooperation to set a standard that much of the world would follow.
We can see this phenomenon in action this week at the 166th annual Trumbull County Fair. If you have been to this fair last year, or many years ago, you will be surprised at the changes that have been made to make this year's fair noticeably different and better than any you have seen. The grandstand shows, rides and food will still be there, along with even more attractions for the entire family.
So much is on the schedule that there is not enough space in this column to mention. The 5,000-seat grandstand will be echoing with live bands, Northeast FASTRAK late models and e-modes, modified and pure stock auto racing, truck and tractor pulls, a metal-crunching demolition derby, Chases' Racing Pigs, and the Broken Horn Rodeo with bull riding, broncos, barrel race, steer wrestling, and team roping.
Talented young people from our communities will be contending for honors with the Miss Trumbull County Fair Pageant, Junior Fair Trumbull Idol Finalist Competition, spelling bee and displays of agricultural skills and accomplishments. The Junior Fair Board is credited for so many of this year's attractions, with their ''very active and very needed'' participation by Fair Board President Tom Sawyer.
At 72 years young, with more than three decades of service to our county fair, Sawyer exemplifies the enthusiasm and dedicated commitment of the 16-member Fair Board. ''Working Board'' best describes this group, whose members can be found at the fairgrounds before, during and after fair week.
Recent improvements have been completed to the buildings and drainage to keep the parking lots, driveways and midway free of mud no matter what the weather may bring. Remember the old joke, ''If you want to stop a drought, just start the Trumbull County Fair.''
When I visited the fair office last week, there was a flurry of activity with board members and staff handling hundreds of details needed to provide an enjoyable and memorable experience for the thousands of people who are expected to enjoy the fair.
This year's theme is ''Farming Locally, Thinking Globally,'' with a greater emphasis on agriculture, which is the largest industry in Trumbull County. Antique and state-of-the-art farm equipment will be on display, with an animal zoo, prize livestock, a fully functioning milking parlor and demonstrations of an array of farming skills. With the growing awareness of backyard gardening and urban agriculture, it may be a good idea to learn from the experience of these professionals.
The TCTC Agricultural Education Building will have a new functioning wetland display prepared by the Trumbull Soil & Water Conservation District. This building is always filled with fascinating displays and activities provided by the Farm Bureau, Trumbull Metro Parks, and Army Corps of Engineers team from Mosquito Lake. Heather Merritt from the Birds in Flight Sanctuary will introduce some rescued birds of prey, including raptors, owls, and hawks. Children's activities are planned every day to provide fun and learning about the natural world, including frogs, bats and dragonflies.
All of this, and so much more, awaits you until Sunday, with the best entertainment value for miles around. So, will I see you at the Trumbull County Fair this week?
Pirko is a Weathersfield resident. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.