Field Days opens with fun and rain

AFTER SEVERAL HOURS of drenching rain, rides on the midway of the New Haven fairgrounds were relatively empty on the opening night of Field Days 2019. Independent photo/Benjamin Glass

VERGENNES CITY BAND member Tom McKean, left, Dennis Bruso and Barry McDonald take a bow as they finished their last song of the night under the Bandstand tent at Field Days on Tuesday evening. Independent photo/Benjamin Glass

SOME VISITORS TO Field Days on Tuesday retreated into the Dairy Barn to find shelter from the rain; others just wanted to admire the cows. Independent photo/Benjamin Glass

NEW HAVEN — Opening night of Addison County Fair and Field Days 2019 on Tuesday was met with scattered showers. The wet conditions prompted fair officials to postpone the 8 p.m. opening parade until Wednesday evening.

But despite the wet conditions (this was Field Days, after all; what did you expect?), crowds began to form around the Ferris wheel and ticket booth stations around 9 p.m., and many of the tents were still abuzz with group performances and expositions.

Under the tent at the bandstand, across from the Field Days center Pavilion, was the “refused-to-be-rained-out Vergennes City Band,” as one of the members called it. To a handful of audience members, the 12-person band played quintessential marching tunes that echoed across the fairgrounds.

The Open Dairy Barn and Paqeutte Exhibit Building still had heavy traffic, and many of the food stands were now serving crowds. Kristie Skor of St. Louis was visiting the Maple Sugar House, trying to stay dry.

“There is plenty to see under the tents and in the buildings, and the Vergennes City Band is a fun surprise,” she said. “My mom grew up on a farm and (was) active in 4-H, so it is fun to see that still going strong. I would love to return to see some more of the performances and competitions.”

In the midway area, many families walked from ride to ride, passing carnival staff, trying to lure them into playing their games. The Gravitron, an amusement ride featuring a spinning UFO-like vessel, was spraying water off the top when it rotated. A carnival ticket counter was blasting pop music by himself.

“I have fun every day. I love my job,” he said, earnestly.

Field Days will run through Saturday, Aug. 10.

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