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Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sunny Spirits Top Soggy Sod at Annual Dwight Fair

Sunny Spirits Top Soggy Sod at 
Annual Dwight Fair
By Mike Lauterborn
(for Fairfield Citizen News)

Fairfield, CT – “We had planned to kick off Friday but the rain was just too much,” said Dwight School PTA President Michele Whelan, standing near a popcorn stand on still soft ground. “But the field dried out pretty quickly and the sun is shining. Fingers crossed that it stays that way!”

Though the first night – Friday, Sept. 23 – had to be cancelled due to buckets of rain that had fallen all day and continued into the overnight period, the Annual Timothy Dwight Fair commenced as planned the following day. Held for decades at the elementary school at 1600 Redding Road, the Fair welcomed scores of families to enjoy over a dozen carnival-style rides, activity galleries, a bake sale, grilled food and face painting. The Fair began at 11 a.m. Saturday, would continue until 9 p.m. and be held Sunday as well, from noon to 4 p.m. The Sunday opening was a reschedule of the Friday cancellation.

Whelan commented, “The event is a huge Dwight and Greenfield Hill community event. It’s Dwight students’ favorite event of the year. Proceeds fund PTA activities, like art in the classrooms, author visits, teaching gardens, junior achievement and assemblies.”

Whelan and fellow planners waited until the eleventh hour Friday to cancel that evening’s activities, hoping that the precipitation would hold off. While it did pause briefly after the dinner hour, Whelan said, “It created unsafe conditions and pools of water everywhere.” Despite the cancellation, her spirit was not dampened and she adopted a show-must-go-on attitude.

Judging by all the buzz, the rain was already a distant memory, supplanted by cotton candy, hamburgers and popcorn. Pop tunes broadcast from large speakers echoed across the fairgrounds, large amusement rides flashed and spun, and children ran here and there shouting and squealing.

Flipping mini basketballs into hoops at an activity booth, six-year-old MacLain Prom, a first grader at Dwight, said, “I like the Scat best,” when asked about his favorite amusement ride at the Fair. “I was upside down and spinning a lot. I got kind of a good headache.”

Parul Pomichter, of Fairfield, was grabbing a bite to eat at a picnic table with her three children. “We love coming here,” she said, “and have come every year since my eldest son Stash (now 11) was in kindergarten here at Dwight. It’s a great Fair.”

Fairfielder Lis Reed, watching her seven-year-old daughter Madeline, a second grader at Dwight, come shooting down the Super Slide, called the event “great family fun.” She added, “It’s an old style, safe, easy, happy deal.”

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