Part 2: The Alaska State Fair Events

My daughter and I decided to spend a beautiful Sunday at the Alaska State Fair. She did not go two days ago when my son and I went to the concert. You can read about that adventure on the Part 1 blog , if interested.

Our primary reason for going was to enjoy the events on a gorgeous sunny Labor Day Sunday. Why not be outside on a day like today? We mapped out our favorites before we left our house: Dan Meyer, The Sword Swallower, Fred Scheer’s Lumberjack show, Age of the Dinosaur, and Cirque Zuma Zuma. Unfortunately, we ran out of time and didn’t get to see Cirque Zuma Zuma.

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The first event was the performance by Dan Meyer. He was very entertaining and definitely put on a show. In fact, the Alaska State Fair printed program describes the show like this:

Known for his ‘cutting edge innertainment,’ Dan Meyer is a 40-time World Champion Sword Swallower and holds seven Guinness World Records. Hailed by Ripley’s Believe It or Not as the ‘World’s TOP Sword Swallower,’ Dan made it to the finals of America’s Got Talent where he was AGT’s ‘Most Dangerous Act’ (Alaska, 2018, p. 15).

One of his performances is shown below.  I can’t show all of my recorded segments because you must make plans to see his show yourself to appreciate his humor and skill.

The next event we saw was the Lumberjack Show.  It was awesome.  The lady announcer said she was Fred Scheer’s wife. (The show is Fred Scheer’s Lumberjack Show.)  I thought she did a fabulous job and earned her spot there.  She was raised around Lumberjacks and is quite accomplished herself.  The Lumberjack Show was described like this in the program:

Watch world-champion lumberjacks battle it out in the ‘Olympics of the Forest,’ while comedy routines keep everyone laughing. This fast-paced show features the same events showcased in ESPN’s Great Outdoor Games and the Lumberjack World (Alaska, 2018, p. 15).

All of the performances by these talented Lumberjacks were awesome.  I will share the pole climbing competition with you.  Apparently, this is one of the events that happens every year.  If you are at the Alaska State Fair in the future, definitely put this on your must-see list!

The last event we went to, besides more of the beautiful flower gardens, was the Age of the Dinosaurs.  It was definitely geared toward younger children but Caris seemed to enjoy walking through and seeing the pretend dinosaur land.

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“I feel like there is something behind me.” – Caris

I will leave you with a few tips and other random pictures.  Some tips: arrive early to avoid long waits on the highway, tie a jacket around your waist in case the temperature drops, order your tickets online for speedier entry, take some cash for the parking fee, and map out your preferred event times prior to arrival.

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GCI is a communications business in Alaska.
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The giant chair was in the Farm Exhibits barn.
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Parking isn’t free.  It is $5 for the day and it was a walk to the fair entrance gate.
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We LOVED visiting the fair! Bye!

XOXO,

Mel

Part 1: The Alaska State Fair Vibe- Palmer, AK

Last night, my son and I went to the Alaska State Fair.  Our primary reason was a concert, but we also wanted to check out the exhibits as well.  As far as the vibe, it was very relaxed.  Most people were dressed for comfort and warmth.  Everyone seemed happy to participate.

Tour of ASF

As far as the weather, it was quite cool.  In fact, it reminded me of cool October mornings in south Georgia because the humidity level was extremely high.  When high humidity meets cooler weather, it collides and makes people feel much colder than the temperature gauge displays.  However, if you looked toward the skyline, you realized you were indeed NOT in south Georgia because there were mountains everywhere.

I would love to share some sights and even sounds with you from the Alaska State Fair in Palmer, Alaska. It was a fun experience; although, it was not inexpensive for the amount of time we were there.  We arrived at 7:00 P.M. because Connor had to work all day.  The two concerts were both about 40 minutes each and the tickets were approximately $50 per person considering the fair admission.  The views were astounding though.  In fact, at one point, we were staring at the mountain with a helicopter and two planes, different depths, within our sight line.  If only my phone camera could capture that spectacular view.  Oh well… I hope you enjoy the video and some pictures of what I could capture. I will start with a song by “Lovely the Band.” (There is one use of profanity before the music starts. Beware!)

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Connor is relaxing outside the designated concert space.
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What a view!
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I am definitely feeling lucky to sit in this beautiful setting.

Shown below are some beautiful flowers located in the main agricultural building (called the Farm Exhibit barn) not far from the concert stage.  I will number these images.  If you know the name of the flower, please comment with this information.

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Purple flower – 1
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Deep Brown flower – 2
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Spotted Lavender flower – 3
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Orange flower – 4
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Burgundy Burst – 5
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I call this one, “swaying in the wind.” -6
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The yellow lady – 7
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Yellow Lovely – 8

On another side of the the Farm Exhibit barn, there were other cool things like animals, mushrooms, and giant vegetables.  These are shown below.

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What a monster!
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Cabbage anyone?
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Giant Squash
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The beets, man!
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Inside the Farm Exhibit barn
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On the way out of the Farm Exhibit barn – a display to dazzle the children
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Heading out of the Farm Exhibit Barn

Next, we went into a building called the Irwin building, if I recall correctly.  I forgot to take a picture of the outside but there were some really neat things inside it as well.

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The before picture shows a plain dresser but the after product is beautiful!
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Someone put a lot of energy into creating this project
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This is really cool! The spring breakup is a happy time but not for this truck!
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This is really neat. The pennies on the edge of the table are bent to fit appropriately.
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Craftsmanship!

I will have more adventures to share with you soon.  Have a happy day!

XOXO,

Mel

A Christmas Towne Adventure with a Keto Pizza Meal

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Oh boy, Oh boy, excited to share this recipe with you!

There has been so much going on recently that I’ll have to combine two topics and share the others with you next week.

First, I’ll discuss Christmas Towne!  (By the way, I literally just said that in my best movie trailer announcer voice.) In my former small town in Georgia, I always looked forward to a fun community Christmas celebration that occurred the first Saturday of December.  It was always top-notch with special performers, amusement rides, local dancers and singers, and more Christmas cheer than can be put into words.  The kick-off was a Christmas parade and the entire thing was FREE, well, except for the vendors.  Last year, my daughter and I prepared a thermos full of hot cocoa and sat on the street, along with hundreds of other people, and watched the parade.  Initially, I thought our move here in Alaska would end that.  However, I got a surprise when I discovered an event for local communities that lasted more than one day.

Last weekend, we went to a Boy Scout camp turned Christmas Towne in Chugiak, Alaska. I thought it would be a fun outing for the family since there were supposed to be free crafts for visitors to create, reindeer, and a Santa Clause. When we arrived, we began strolling through the village to eventually get greeted by a lady.  She asked us if we knew where we were going or whether we needed help.  Of course, we answered that we needed help.  She pointed out things that were going on in the Towne.  Since we went with our neighbors down the street, we had company too, which was nice.  There were definitely crafts for children (and adults) to create in the main building where Santa was located.  Caris and I wanted to take a picture with Santa, which we did, but Santa ended up not being very nice.  In fact, he mocked my southern accent, openly, and with a laugh.  I almost allowed my good-spirit to fade away and comment how Santa shouldn’t do that, but decided it was pointless.  Instead, I decided it wasn’t worth him crushing my spirits and moved on cheerfully to the next location.

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Our crafts are in the bag! P.S. Santa doesn’t like southern accents.
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This reindeer was so beautiful!
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This was the location of the snow ball play.
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A local restaurant after Christmas Towne… Yes, he is hungry!

After we finished crafting, we met a reindeer.  Caris really enjoyed it.  The wonderful lady who was responsible for the reindeer told a great story about her job as the oldest elf and intrigued us all.  We also had a snowball fight!  There was a huge field of synthetic snowballs that wouldn’t melt and we all spent about 15 minutes playing around with those.  Another feature at the Towne was a Smores making area where anyone could spend time warming up and, if desired, make some smores.  All-in-all, it was a very fun day and it was FREE!

Now, to change subjects, you know I can’t leave you without a wonderful keto recipe creation.  Yesterday, I made a delicious keto pizza with a cauliflower-pesto crust.  It really tasted amazing with our bacon topped side salad.  The recipe is below.

Keto Pizza Dinner

Ingredients

2 bags of cauliflower florets

1 TBSP garlic powder

1 TBSP of your favorite pesto

A clean kitchen towel

½ cup of Mozzarella cheese

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Your favorite pizza sauce

Your favorite pizza toppings

Steam cauliflower with the smallest amount of water needed to do so.  Drain.  Then, put cauliflower in Vitamix (or whatever mixer you own) and make into a smooth paste like texture.  (I received a Vitamix over 5 years ago from Micah and it is the best machine for kitchen creativity.  I have nothing but wonderful things to say about mine. There is a link below if interested in checking it out.) Then, dump cauliflower onto the middle of a clean kitchen towel.  Start getting water out of the paste.  I pull together like a bag and push out as much as I can.  My towel held so much water it began dripping!  So, I opened it up and used some clean paper towels to get the remaining fluid off.

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You need to take off the stems because these aren’t needed for the crust. Steam.
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Blend in your mixer until you get a smooth texture. (This isn’t smooth yet.)
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This is what my pizza looked like after draining and adding garlic and pesto.
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This is the what my pizza looked like after the first bake.

Next, preheat oven to 450 degrees and put cauliflower paste into a bowl.  Add the garlic powder and pesto to mixture and mix well by hand.  Once mixed, put cauliflower mixture onto a non-stick sprayed tinfoil covered pan.  Shape the mixture into the pizza shape you like.  (I always prefer a circle.)  Make sure it isn’t too thin, but you definitely don’t want it too thick or it won’t be crispy.  I sprinkle a little more garlic powder on it at this stage.  Bake for 12 minutes until starting to look brown on edges.  Take out of oven and spread a thin amount of pizza sauce onto paste.  Add meat (if you want.)  I added ground turkey.  Then, top with a generous amount of mozzarella cheese.  Bake for 7-10 more minutes, based on your oven’s cook time until top is brown and cheese looks bubbly.  Serve with a side salad. Our side salad had mini bell peppers, diced boiled eggs, cheese, and bacon on it.

Warm wishes,

Mel