Saturday, September 03, 2016

Fair: Washington State Fair

The third leg of the holiday took me from Alaska down to Seattle. A city I've been to twice previously. This time however I was here for another state fair, this time the Washington State Fair also known as the Puyallup Fair. After a fairly trouble free flight where Delta kindly gave me $500 for not getting on the flight (I was in no hurry despite me needing to be at the airport at 4am) I eventually made it to Seattle, caught the monorail to the Space Tower then walked to my hotel, who kindly told me of the right bus to get me down to Puyallup.

Thank you SoundTransit for getting me there!

From the station it was a short walk down the town's main street to reach the fair. I loved this statue which you pass on the way to Pioneer Park.

I guess there are local elections going on here too.

On entering the fair I spent a little time at a demonstration of basic b-boying. If people don't know what toprock is now they're a lost cause :)

The fair is pretty big with lots of stands, displays, concerts and the obligatory fair. A number of rides including a wooden coaster are permanently located here and only open at certain times of the year. Historically this was just a week or so each year and at a time when other parks in the area which logistically made this a challenge. But over the last year or so they appear to be open more often which makes getting here a little easier.

The wooden coaster was the first we rode. It's a pretty good wooden coaster with a stunning drop on the return leg that had us flying out of our seats. Yes, I know the pedant will say it's actually the train dropping from below us, and I get it, but it's an amazing surprise I've probably just spoiled! And for those who are wondering why I'm now talking in plural, I got to meet a friend from Brazil who just happened to be visiting the fair on the same day. Hi Maria!

The second coaster is Rainier Rush, an odd steel coaster that rides better than it looks like it should. The double loops are angled, making it a bit of an odd layout. The ride was pleasantly enjoyable.

The third permanent ride is one of those old German coasters that enthusiasts get excited about, and as far as we're aware it only ever resided here, making it a little unique as most of them travelled. With Maria with me the single rider restriction was fortunately avoided.


As well as the permanent coasters the fair had bolstered it's size by having a showman bring some rides onto the land too. So coaster number 4 was Speedy, a Wacky Worm coaster which looked as blue as the Alaskan one.

Urgh! A dragon wagon made coaster number 5. Being a dragon wagon in an American state meant we had a high chance of not being allowed to ride it...and we were not allowed to ride it.

Cars from a go-gator repurposed into a merry go around

The final coaster was called Tiger Coaster but looked uncannily like an Orient Express coaster. It was nice to be told we could ride this one.

It's always funny to see things with the word "Fanny" in their name in America.

a slightly more luxurious massage machine, which probably doesn't have "fanny" in its name.

One of the exhibition halls had been turned into a crafts exhibition where people were displaying their obsessions.

it's not known if he only collects right feet trainers.

I might research this a bit more. It was some sort of wristband that apparently cures everything. It smelt got off and got my skeptic sense tingling.

When I was a kid shopping centres always had a stand showing off a slicer, mandolin thing. It's still going on.

An amusing food stand. I bought a gyro from here and the staff were a little suspicious when I ordered having seen me taking photos before ordering. When they realised I was a tourist and not a food inspector we had a little laugh and chat.

Most of the kids giving this a go were probably already diabetic!

My not so little scary ponies

Well it makes a change to pony rides I guess. 

For history fans I found a little corner of the fair that had been turned into a museum of the fair.

This soon became two chairs.

Not "caramel", "Carmel" 

I had been here for a good few hours now and didn't want to miss my bus back to Seattle and Maria, who'd arrived some time later, still wanted to ride so we said our goodbyes and she headed straight back to the Classic Coaster for some more riding.

I forgot that the fair was famous for its hot scones so I grabbed a bag for the journey back. Nom!!!

and after a near 2-hour journey I was back in the moonlight shadow of the Space Tower.

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