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Posts Tagged ‘County Fair Party Theme’

It is getting to be that time of year when County Fairs are held across the country, highlighting our rural roots and ambitions.

If you want to recreate that experience at home, think about hosting a County Fair themed party. It can be a lot of fun and not that hard to put together.

Invitations

Think outside the norm for some fun invitations. You could send them on blue ribbons, use red or blue gingham cloth to cover the outside of the card or card stock shaped like a barn.

Decorations

Use canning jars filled with sunflowers or wildflowers as centerpieces. Cover your tables in red or blue gingham material. For an extra pop of county fun. Put down bandanas in the center of the table before setting on the centerpieces. You can also use bandanas for napkins if you want to go all-out country. Raffia ribbon is another great choice. If you have kids who are complaining about being bored, have them make sunflower chains by running a darning needle through flower heads and stringing together on plain white thread.

If it is an evening party outdoors, use citronella candles to not only provide some nice lighting, but also keep the bugs at bay.

Games

Create your own carnival area with a variety of fun and easy games.

Pour birdseed in a large pan and sprinkle in a few pennies. Have a contest to see who can find the first penny.

Use canning jar rings and pop bottles for a ring toss game.

Sack races or three-legged races are fun. Do a tug of war game or a water balloon toss.

You can also find inexpensive carnival-like games at Oriental Trading

Shop the dollar store for fun prizes.

Contests

Have your guests bring something to enter in a contest. It could be a vegetable, baked goods or crafts. You could have several categories to choose from. If you do have several categories, select three or so guests to judge each category, splitting up the efforts so most of your guests have an opportunity to judge.

Food

You can keep the food simple and fun. Serve hot dog and hamburgers for the easiest menu. You could also make corn dogs and curly fries, if you don’t mind the frying or the calories!  You can find mixes  for things like corn dogs, funnel cakes and more.Think about fair foods you have enjoyed. It is easy to buy a few bags of cotton candy for your guests to share. Serve caramel apples of chocolate dipped bananas or bowls of homemade ice cream. Icy cups of strawberry lemonade or sweet tea are great beverages everyone can enjoy.

However you decide to plan your County Fair Themed Party, remember to have fun with it and enjoy your guests!

She Who Needs an Elephant Ear!

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Back where I grew up, they are picking their best produce, whipping up their best recipes, scrubbing down their 4-H animals, gulping  gallons of lemonade and indulging in dozens of “Happy Bowls” at the annual County Fair this week.

It was always a fun time of year as a kid. Everybody went at least one day. I remember strolling through the animal barns with my dad, begging for a bag of cotton candy and gawking at the huge and sometimes bizarre produce on display. I have never liked the carnival, so that wasn’t a big draw, but you could get all the junk food a little body could hold, see friends and family you hadn’t visited with for a while and, in general, enjoy all the spectacles the fair provided.

When I was in college and desperate for a summer job, I spent several weeks working at the fairgrounds, first as a grunt and then in the office (which was way more fun!). The fair manager was a sweet and wonderful lady who made going to work a pleasure.

Even where we now reside, we can go to any one of three county fairs in our immediate area.

For those of you who are too far away from a county fair or not into the whole carnival/dirt/smell/crowd thing that goes along with it, think about hosting a county fair themed party. It could be a lot of fun for both you and your guests.

Start out with the invitations. Make it look country using red or blue checked paper with contrasting red or blue gingham ribbon.

Set tables with red and white checked tablecloths. Nothing says “county fair” quite like those fun table coverings. You can find inexpensive plastic ones at party or craft stores or cloth ones at most department stores.

Use sunflowers as centerpieces and to highlight tables. Loosely arrange them in canning jars and tie a piece of gingham fabric around the top of the jars. If you have old jars that have turned blue, even better!

Ask guests to bring something to enter in a judging competition. It could be produce, a craft project, whatever. Although I recommend leaving the animals at home. Trust me on this one. Have everyone vote on their top three favorite entries, tally the votes and give ribbons out. You can easily make your own (or have the kids make them). Here is a website with a fun step-by-step guide. How to Make a Fair Ribbon

The food could be potluck or you can go “whole hog” and make a fun selection of  fair food like corn dogs, funnel cakes, lemonade and home-made ice cream. Here is a link  Funnel Cake Mix to some good funnel cake mix if you don’t want to make it from scratch.  You can also get a tasty corn dog batter mix here. Please ignore the fact that I know you can order them from Bass Pro Shops. Please. Thank you.

You could even set up some fun country fair type games. Attach balloons to a piece of foam board and have darts people can throw to pop the balloons. You can use jar rings and empty pop bottles for a ring toss. Sack races, water balloon fights and tug-of-war are all inexpensive and fun. Prizes could be fun little trinkets picked up from the dollar store.

Have fun with this theme and see if it doesn’t become a great party you and your friends remember for a long time to come. And eat a funnel cake for me!

Happy Entertaining!

Shanna

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