Ahhh...... the La County Fair. Where else can a city kid get face to face with a cow, pet a sheep, and run through a corn maze without leaving the metropolitan area? Of course no self respecting fair exists without fried food, halls filled with people selling the next big thing, and rides that spin so fast I get nauseated just looking at them. Lucky for us Socal residents, the LA County Fair has all of this. But did you know it is also where you can pet an alligator, walk amongst dinosaurs and teach your kids the fine art of horse betting? I didn't either, until I went!
It seems as though whenever I make plans to go to a fair, the weather gods plot against me and send temperatures soaring up into the 100s. Lucky (or unlucky) for me, I am stubborn and when make I plans to go to the stinking fair, we are going to the stinking fair. I had promised my daughter a birthday ride on a carousel and since Legoland did not have one (shocking isn't it? I mean how cute would a Lego carousel be?), I knew I could fulfill her wish at the fair. Yes, it felt like it was about 116 as we walked across the never ending span of asphalt through the parking lot, past all the big kid rides, and over to the tiny tots section, but the excitement on her face when we finally spotted her coveted "up and down" was worth it. Plus, getting the carousel ride out of the way meant I didn't have to listen to her requests continuously for a second day in a row. She is a persistent little monkey.
From there we shopped the air conditioned buildings where I secured a lifetime supply of jewelry cleaner and contemplated spending too much money on a jalapeno griller thingy (it seemed like such a cool thing to have at the time) before sounds of Paul asking me where my sanity went echoed in the back of my head.
The kids were getting antsy and I was feeling recovered enough to journey back into the heat so we headed over to the farm area. We greeted the panting farm animals and fondled some goats but I think Mari and Ben's favorite part was running through the hay bail maze. They did it over and over and over and over. Mari just kept running. Never stopped. Never seemed winded. That child is born to run. Ben, on the other hand, was pink and sweaty after a couple laps and kept finding ways to cheat in the maze. That's my boy.
After a pony ride we left the farm area and headed back in to the AC. This is where Ben hit the jackpot. An entire building devoted to dinosaurs! The kids got to pet an alligator and walked amongst animatronic giants. Ben was so excited he just didn't know what to do with himself. Dinosaurs were definitely not something I was expecting to see at the fair!
Our trip to fair couldn't be complete without some horse racing. The kids had a blast cheering for the horses and playing with the older cousins in the stands between races. I tried to get Ben to tell me if I should take horse 3 or horse 5 in the next race and he kept insisting I pick "ball". There was no ball choice but Ben obviously thought there should be. In his world, balls are always the best choice.
This weekend is the last weekend of the LA County Fair and I highly encourage you to go. The weather should be in the low 70s (finally!) and your kids will have a great time. Oh- and if you get a chance, throw two bucks on the number three horse for me, he's due!