Saturday, September 13, 2014

Oklahoma State Fair and a Pow-Wow

We were on a state fair streak and it was hard to stop. Next up was the Oklahoma State Fair in Oklahoma City.

One of the charming aspects of living in tornado alley is that you'll constantly be reminded of your impending doom by all of the storm shelters for sale everywhere.

Our status as recent St. Louis refugees made seeing this baby arch even more excellent. A fairground I visited in Colombia had its own arch too. It must be a thing.

Gateway to corndogs.

In an odd reversal of the order of things, Lydia was the one buying weird food this time. She bought this fried giant gummy bear on a stick. It was pretty atrocious.

From any spot in the fair you could look up and see this giant spike pointing toward the sky. It looked like one of those rides that whips you up and down really fast, but this one was never doing anything like that. Just standing there. We had to check it out.

"The Space Tower is not operational" is the saddest sentence in the English language. 

It looked pretty darn cool. It seemed more like a moving observation deck than a ride where you lose your lunch, but still very awesome. It opened in 1968 and closed in 2010 due to mechanical problems.

I thought this police lifeguard chair was pretty hilarious.

It was a slight bit chilly on this particular day, so I was responsible and wore a sweatshirt. Of course the one I brought had MIZZOU written across the front in bright gold letters. I was confronted with my mistake a couple of times, including having a gentleman inform me that "Mizzou sucks!" very loudly while walking by.

On our way back to Missouri, home of sucky universities, we passed the Wyandotte Nation Pow-Wow about 5 miles East of Wyandotte, OK on Highway 60. I hadn't the slightest idea what to expect at a pow-wow but I would say it's a bit like a Native American county fair with no rides. There are plenty of booths selling food and crafty stuff.

The main event was happening at the center of the grounds. I would say it was shaped like a doughnut. There was a group singing and drumming in the center and various types of performers danced in a track around them. Then surrounding them on the outside was the audience. I thought it was pretty interesting but didn't really know what any of it meant. Each participant had a number pinned on their costume as it was a competition of some sort.

We had an "Indian taco", which was pretty much a taco salad on top of a piece of frybread. Frybread is essentially a fried think slab of bread, sort of like a fat tortilla. According to Wikipedia frybread "was created in 1864 using the flour, sugar, salt and lard that was given to them by the United States government" during relocation. It is the official state bread of South Dakota.

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