I LOVE Summerfest!
If you live here and have never been before, shame on you because it’s awesome. Even if you’re an uncultured hick, the food alone is worth going for. Gyros, smoothies, Navajo tacos, burgers, freshly squeezed lemonade, ice cream, cotton candy, shaved ice, BBQ, funnel cakes, Mexican and Asian entrees, and best of all . . . homemade kettle corn!
Have you ever had homemade kettle corn? I’m not talking about Orville Redenbacher’s hack microwave stuff, but the real deal made in big metal kettles and hand-scooped into a bag for you by a handsome young cowboy with a chin full of scruff who says “Here you go ma’am”?
Of all the delectable foody flavors wafting through the park tempting the money right out of my purse and fat cells right onto my rear, the subtle scent of salty-sweet crunchiness slyly swirls into my nostrils and leads me straight to its evil lair within a matter of minutes of arrival.
Beyond the food, the art and music are great too. We were disappointed when we arrived at 7:50 last night ready to stroll and browse the booths only to find many of the venders already closing up for the night. The radio ads said “Open til 10 p.m.” so I thought we had a good two hours to enjoy the lovely summer twilight hours at Summerfest. There must have been some discrepancy about official closing time, but even if there was, the sidewalks were still packed with people so why would shopkeepers shut down with so many potential customers still mulling around and plenty of great evening light and weather to boot?
But what we did get to see was great. Cool calligraphy, paintings, jewelry, pottery, caricatures, metal work, air brush, tie dye, balloon animals, face painting, and lots of great photography. The art contest had some impressive entries and I even almost agreed with some of the awards this year. Why do art judges assume weird means deep and therefore good?
As the last of the booths closed, we sat down with our treats by the stage to enjoy the live music that was still going at least. There was a country band playing and I couldn’t help but notice the drummer looked just like Animal from the rockin’ Muppet band “Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem.” My iphone pic doesn’t do him justice, but I swear he was the human version of the ballistic drumming Muppet. I wanted to stay after and ask him if Animal was his inspiration, but Jason wouldn’t let me. He was embarrassed enough when I pushed my way to the front of the stage to snap a pic with my phone as it was.
When they officially turned off the lights to shoe us away, we still weren’t ready to go home so we strolled down Main Street and looked in the windows of the quaint shops there. Scott licked the candy shop windows to see if they were flavored like in Willy Wonka’s factory. They weren’t. My daughter and I gushed over wedding and prom dresses in a formal wear shop while the boys grunted about an outdoor outfitters store. We were all drawn to the retro baby blue trimmed-out tuxedo complete with ruffle shirt and batwing bow tie in the Kater Shop display window. I had a flashback of serving at my aunt’s wedding.
On the ride home I rolled down the windows, propped my feet up on the dash and munched my kettle corn as the cool night breeze blew on my face.