Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Sights, Sounds,Smells And Starship

A few weeks ago, we spent a Friday evening at the Michigan State Fair. It is the oldest state fair in the country and sadly, after 161 years, this was it's last year. It's apparently not profitable enough for the state to continue running it.

We were a little hesitant to go at all because it's in Detroit. Even if you've never been to Detroit, I'm sure you know it's reputation for crime. A few years ago there was a shooting at the fair. We weren't entirely confident about our safety. As it turned out, we had no problems whatsoever. I did have to explain to my daughter what a prostitute is when we saw one on the way home, though.

We didn't spend much time on the midway and we didn't ride any of the rides or play any of the games. Instead, we spent most of our time touring the animal exhibits and walking around the 164 acre grounds.

The smell coming from all of the food stands was amazing, and there were so many of them.

The pigs seemed pretty relaxed despite the crowd of people passing through. There were more breeds than I ever knew existed, but this guy was my favorite.

Where else would you see a sign like this? I meant to get a picture of the "Milk A Real Cow For 50 Cents" sign, too, but we never got back that way. It was a bottomless cup, meaning that you could drink as many cups as you wanted to fill. It seemed a little strange to me, but I guess it's a good deal if you like unpasteurized milk (need I remind you what a germophobe I am?).

The horses were gorgeous. This is my son and Purple Hoodie Chick making friends with a big guy.

Our main purpose for going to the fair, though, was to go to a Starship concert. We got to the concert stage early and got to sit in the first row behind the reserved seating area. The warm-up band was a local group called Standing Room Only. I wasn't all that excited about sitting through their set, but they turned out to be really good. They played late 70's and early 80's rock. It was a beautiful night for an outdoor concert.

After a brief intermission, Starship took the stage. We go to see them every time (and I mean every time) they're in town. They always put on a great show, and it's just as much fun for the kids as it is for us. If you've never taken your kids to a concert, I highly recommend it. We told them before the concert started that were expected to sing, clap and dance because that's all part of what makes a Starship concert fun. If you leave without a hoarse voice and sore hands, you're doing something wrong!

Mickey Thomas, the lead singer, mentioned that he joined the band 30 years ago and his first song with them was "Jane". I can tell you, he sounds every bit as good as he did back then.

Mark Abrahamian, the guitarist, is fantastic. The solo he plays during "Fooled Around And Fell In Love" is amazing.

After the show, Mickey signed autographs outside of the concert area. He is undoubtedly the nicest guy in the music business. My daughter got to have a little conversation with him and she was thrilled. I also had the opportunity to get the answer to a question that I've always wondered about. I've always wanted to know what song he's performed the more than any other. I guessed it was "Jane", but it turns out to be "Fooled Around and Fell In Love". He was so gracious to take the time to answer my question. Thanks Mickey!

There was a petition circling around to save the Michigan State Fair. I hope they are successful. We had a wonderful time there and would not hesitate to go in the years to come.


Heidi said...

Sounds like you had a blast at the fair!

Kathy said...

That is so sad about the fair ending! We have a New England Fair called Eastern States Exposition and it is giant. all the New England states are represented and they even have replicas of the state buildings that sell items from the individual states like food and crafts. Last year we saw another Mickey...the one from the Monkeys!

Tattoos and Teething Rings said...

That sounds like so much fun, I love fairs! Our state fair is too far to go to, but our county fair is this week and we're going Friday. I can't wait to eat yummy, junk food and buy over-priced souvenirs.

Chicago Mom said...

It's a shame the fair is ending, a sad sign of the times. What a great time you had at the concert! How cool that the band members were so friendly. I used to work for Washburn Guitars and I got to know Craig Chaquico, he is a great guy - apparently just like his former band mates!

Purple Flowers said...

It's sad for the fair to end. Think of all the children who will never know what their state fair is all about. It's all part of the Americana scenery.

5thsister said...

I love fairs and rodeos! Americana at its best! And to see Starship, too! What fun!

Joanna Jenkins said...

I'm a huge fan of Fairs. I'd for for you to lose yours. It looks like you had so much fun!

ChristineM said...

So sad to see it go away! I hope they are able to bring it back again! We go the Big E (the one Kathy mentioned above) every year - I think we're going next week. I LOVE it!

Lissaloo said...

Sounds like a great trip to the fair! We love to check out all the animal barns when we go, I think that's always the best part :)

Rachel said...

That is way too depressing about the State Fair ending!!! I'm glad you had a good (and safe) time...of course, minus having to explain what a prostitute was to your daughter! :)