Troutbirder II

Troutbirder II
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Friday, September 4, 2009

Minnesota State Fair (Part 2)

It was early afternoon and we were slowing down. Ok. I will take that back. The weight of the popcorn and the deep fat fried cheese curds was slowing ME down. Sitting down, I pulled out my fair map, looking for something we had never visited before. Then I found it in the far far northwestern part of the fair grounds, next to a parking lot. The Pet Center.
We headed off in that direction through enormous hordes of people crowding both the sidewalks and the streets.

There was a small grandstand and luckily we were able to find front row seating. It was clearly an obedience and agility demonstration for sometype of dogs. The sound system was terrible so I missed much of that. Still the skills being demonstrated by the owners and the dogs (who turned out to be Austrailian Shepherds) was amazing. We watched them do their thing for about a half hour before going into the Pet Center to meet the various dogs and other pets being shown.
btw... when we got home, I had a long talk with The Baron on the need to raise the bar :) .....on his obedience training!A big surprise occured when Mrs T suggested a trip to The Olde Mill. This has been a popular fair venue for almost a hundred years. You float , in a wooden gondola, through a very dark tunnel. Its very popular with parents of little kids and young couples of romantically inclined teenagers. Puzzled, I said "huh?" Turns out to have been much darker than I vaguely remembered. We had a good time.

Our last highlight that day was the new Miracle of Birth Center This agricultural education exhibit is the birthplace of approximately 200 animals including calves, lambs and piglets during the fair’s 12 day run.
The most popular free exhibit on the fairgrounds moved to its new, larger home for the 2006 State Fair. Three times its former size, the new CHS Miracle of Birth Center allows more visitors the opportunity to learn about animal agriculture

It was amazing. Although having lived in a rural area most of my life, I would have to count myself among the probably 95% of the citizens of this state, who have no personal experience on this subject whatsoever. There was a huge crowd in the building. It was evident from the big TV monitors hanging from the ceiling that a cow was giving birth and that there was no hope, due to the crowd of getting anywhere near it. So we plunked down on a small bench near the sheep. Watching the TV monitors Mrs. T began giving me the "I not sure I want to stay and watch this" look. That quickly changed as she was drawn into the drama.

For the moment, I was more fascinated with Mrs Ewe and baby lamb. A small sign said the baby had been born less that an hour before. Mom was cleaning things up and I was wondering how long it would be before the little guy stood up. The answer was very quickly as it wobbled to it's feet.

I wanted to shout "try the other end little fella," but thought let nature take its course. Eventually it did.

I have no pictures of the calf birthing but the TV images and words are still quite clear in my mind.

"Were going to check now to be sure the calf is positioned correctly."

Two assistants with rubber gloves up to their elbows ascertain that it is.

Sometime later two feet appear.

"The're saying it's a very large calf. She is a good mother but we will prepare a backup plan to assist her."

More time passes and technicalities are discussed. Then the head appears and the crowd goes...."ahhh."

The back up plan is attaching a chain somewhere. Troutbirder thinks OMG!

Time passes then suddenly the calf literally pops out and is grabbed and laid in the straw.

The crowd applauds and cheers wildly. You would have thought the Vikings had finally won a Super Bowl!

What a day at the fair!


  1. Looks like Baron was taking your lecture seriously;) I've never been to a state fair altho I go to the county fairs often.

  2. Very fun post. That birthing center is a great idea. Most people just have no idea. Enjoyed the tour!

  3. You have written this with your usual flair TB. :) Love it. :)

    I think the most amazing part here is that Mrs T didn't pick up a whole lot of ideas at the obedience center...and not for Baron LOL!! Sorry about that, couldn't resist teasing you. :) Poor Baron sounds as if he is for a tough time? Yeah, right!! I will believe that when I see it. :)

    I hope there was no kissing going on in the tunnel in your gondola TB. For shame!! :)

    That birthing center is a great idea!! Love it.

    I mentioned in the previous post I was going to try to go to ours this weekend? Forget it, part of it burnt down. LOL!! Luckily no one was hurt. See, we do it in style. :)

  4. Great post. Growing up on a dairy farm gave me a lot of experience in the cow and horse birthing systems. Also helped on the birth of my first child when she came before the doctor got there!!!!

  5. Glad you enjoyed the agility demo - tell Baron to get to work! I'm not so sure I'd be hanging around the birthing center, though - eeps!

  6. Wow, great fair. This was a fun post.
    Aren't those aussies just awesome;)!

  7. Dog agility is so much fun to watch. If I ever get another dog, I would love to try training her for that.
    Thanks for a fun trip to the State Fair. It's fun to see all those different animals.