While we wait for yet another storm or two to pass over and drop yet MORE rain to flood the local area, I thought I’d take this time to post about a recent FUN day son and nephew had at the local fair. It was nephew’s first visit to a fair and we had extra company when Nana joined us.

Come tag along as we made our way past rides and games. We’ll enter by way of the Coach ride…

First we checked out the military exhibit. As befitting our Canadian Forces, the radios in the communication command centre didn’t work…
but the boys tried to talk to each other anyway. There was also a dummy  lookout post where anyone could try on some of the protective equipment our soldiers wear when serving overseas.
In theatre Canadian troops wear Kevlar body armour in addition to the flak jacket and metal helmet modeled by Nephew on this particular hot and muggy day.  He was mighty glad to only wear that heavy stuff for a few minutes.  Our soldiers wear their gear for hours, sometimes even days, on end without a break.  Years of this wreaks havoc on their bodies; long term damage from the added weight of all this gear.

Okay…so let’s mosey on over to the House of Mirrors where the boys posed as they wandered through the maze.
Poor nephew! Right after this photo he walked right into a wall ~ with all those mirrors, windows and angled walkway it is tricky navigating the route without bumping into something!

Once they escaped the House of Mirrors it was time for the special presentation at the fair.   Son was particularily excited to see this show … so ~ shhhhh! Let’s peek in the tent and see what’s going on….

…what has captured their attention?…


What is THAT?

A CROCODILE!! Oh boys, WHAT have you gotten us in to??

It’s a cute little croc though, isn’t it?  Looks can be deceiving however – little croc beelined straight for the crowd…to mingle with the kids, I thought.  Ha!
She was actually checking out the lunch buffet and was headed for a tasty morsel.

A nice looking kid with cute, blonde curls.

I doubt he’d still have that cute hair if little ol’ croc got much closer! The zookeeper picked up the crocodile and hauled her away from the crowd.  Seems we’re the snack of choice for one of two types of crocodiles and this is one of them.  After she went back to her cage a few other crocodiles made appearances.

We learned a bit about them.

The duct tape around a few of the crocs’ mouths are a precautionary measure designed to maximize safety.  It came off easily and none of the animals were stressed that I could see…but then… how would the average person KNOW that a croc is irritated or uncomfortable? 

This show originated out of the Ottawa area, home to Ray Reptile Refuge.  It is a sanctuary-type place (a zoo) where almost 100% of the reptiles are donated by people who kept the animals as pets.

Until they grew out of the cute, baby stage.   None of the crocs pictured here are fully grown and the smallest is about 10 years old.  Crocodiles can live for many years and as creatures in captivity, they tend to grow a little bigger and live a little longer than if they existed in the wild.   The reptiles selected for the touring show are generally gentle creatures used to humans and their touch.

The animals are fed prior to touring and a good meal take a week or two to digest (No wonder they are smiling and look blissful!).

Following the show the audience was permitted to approach the crocodiles and touch them. About the only part of a crocodile that is off limits to touch is its head. 

Here a croc’s eyes are open…

and now are they not only closed…
but they also sink into the eye socket! Kind of disappear from sight, no pun intended. This protects their eyes from anything that can bump into them.

This female zookeeper in these photos loves the reptiles and her job.  I loved her tattoo and asked permission to photograph it. 
Next time I’m in Ottawa a visit to this Reptile zoo will be on the agenda!

Once the show was over and we all touched the hard crocodile scales, we ventured back into the fairground area. Nephew decided to try out the Super Slide while the rest of us watched at the bottom.

Off he went and began to climb.

Up he climbed.

Up, up and climbed up some more.

He FINALLY reached the top. The view from up must be magnificant!  Looking down at the slide though It looks a bit steeper now, doesn’t it??

Off he roared, flying down the slide.  He actually bumped the slide in just the right place and went airborne! 

Nephew LOVED it; there was a huge smile as he declared it “AWESOME”.

Then there was the Survivor Game. Truly, looking at those flimsy ladders, what chance did anyone have to reach the bell at the top and ring it? We watched a few brave kids and adults give it a whirl. The ladders flipped, throwing every contestant off. Still, nephew was adament he could win if he tried it. So, armed with the “$5 for 3 tries”, off he went to conquer this challenge.

Here nephew listens to the rules as he prepares to climb up for the first time.

You are NOT allowed to:
kneel on the ladder.
jump for the bell.
lay out on the ladder.

So, not as easy as one might think.

On his first try the rope ladder tipped over and dumped him off.

Undaunted, he went again.

He flipped off again.

Now for the last try.

Would he do it?

Did he succeed?

Let’s check it out…..
YES HE DID! Way to go! Here he is with his prize.

The monkey’s suit wouldn’t come off although Nephew tried. It was a hard-won prize but there was a little macho-image problem what with the monkey wearing a ….a diaper… or a sunsuit. Never mind, pride won out and away the boys went to try another game.

These two were made for the wild, wild west. They LOVED the shooting games. They would still be there if we left them with money, food and water! This game in particular scored high points with both kids. It didn’t take them long to figure out which part of the cup to hit in order to knock it over or off the shelf.
Here they are armed and ready for action.

Son demonstrates his fine shooting form. He wanted to know if we could adapt a pellet gun to shoot like these guns did. Not a chance, buddy. This place was made for these games ~ just what exactly did you want to shoot at OUR place???

Nephew shows off his winning form. They just couldn’t get enough of these kinds of games!

Look at the stiff competition between these two!  Once the boys realized that if only the two of them played a then it was guaranteed ONE of them would win, well…what were we waiting for?

Nephew won the first race.
They wanted to race again (still no one else playing).
So they played round 2.

Look who won!
Son was so proud of himself! I  watched the boys as well as the race and  noticed Nephew taking his time and slowing down…to make sure his cousin finished ahead of him.

My hero. No wonder we adore this fellow!

Here the boys show off additional prizes they won.

Another ride they wanted to try out was this one….
being watched over by whatever-this-hideous-thing-is. If this thing hadn’t been bobbing back and forth, you would almost think it was alive with nasty eyes peering over your shoulder. This next photo shows it in its real context and not quite so scary.

In the line to try out the Haunted House…

Getting closer…

No turning back now!




…where are you?….

…we’re still waiting…..




Back safe and sound!

Now it was time for some downtime; enough excitement! The perfect way to finish up the fair was to visit the barn animals.  There wasn’t a lot in the way of farm animals but the pig was pretty cute and so were the donkeys pictured here.

Son liked this donkey.

Meanwhile, Nanna was visiting another feisty donkey who was more than a little interested in Nephew’s grand prize from the Survivor Challenge.

After escaping from the donkey’s reaching lips, we left the barn.

The last stop of the fair was to load up with some drinks and cotton candy. Armed with a bit of fun food, drink and prizes….tired but happy….it was time to call it a day. The nice thing about a small fair? The parking was close by and handy ~ and no traffic to battle through!

Thank you for accompanying us on our lovely day and I hope you had as much fun as we did. As a final note, I must confess that I ended up joining the boys for a round at the shooting game. I’ve always been a pretty good shot and those puny cups were no match for my skills! I came away with a little prize of my own; a stuffed lion. No, it does not rest on my pillow in a place of honour….

I…um…. tossed it to the dogs and let them have some fun of their own. While the lion is no more the boys, Nana and I have some great memories.

And I have some great pictures for the future. heh heh heh