Moderate Saturday weather brings attendance rebound at Fonda Fair

Phil Singer aims to keep the right mixture of soil and water while working on a sand sculpture near the entrance to the Fonda Fair Saturday. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

FONDA — If temperatures over 90 deterred traffic to the Fonda Fair Friday, more moderate weather had the opposite effect Saturday, with the admissions booths showing a 50 percent rebound.

Three bouts of the demolition derby that filled the grandstand with spectators at noon also couldn’t have hurt.

People in the stands watched from a safe distance. Those near the fence were pelted with mud.

Jackie Rachon and her husband, John, have been fairgoers for more than 60 years. “I like the demolition derby and the monster trucks,” said Jackie. Monster trucks were scheduled for Saturday evening.

Before the derby, Miss Fonda Fair, Julia Marrone of Johnstown, a sophomore at Fulton-Montgomery Community College, sang the National Anthem.

Richard J. Kadur hold his daughter, Anastasiah Kadur, while her mom, Ashley Hulbert, fixes her hair in the cattle barn at the Fonda Fair Saturday. The family owns Wild Flower Acres in Sprakers. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

The other winners were also introduced again–Jaiden Farrington, a Broadalbin seventh-grader, as Junior Miss Fonda Fair; Chloe Lyons, a Gloversville fifth-grader, Princess; and Sydney Arminio, a Johnstown third-grader, Junior Princess.

Rabbit hopping and pig races were a treat.

Rosaire’s Royal Racers were surrounded by spectators as the emcee sought five children to cheer on the five pig contestants. Children hopped and raised their hands to be selected as the emcee spoke at an auctioneer’s pace.

Indifferent to the crowd surrounding them, the full-grown pigs showed little interest in racing, through one finally made its way to the end.

Near the entrance to the fair, Phil Singer continued to refine his agricultural sand sculpture of a pig driving a tractor and a cow nearby. “Most people are pretty impressed with what you can do with sand when you put your mind to it,” he said.

Members of the Montgomery Couty dairy princess committee and state Assemblyman Angelo Santa Barbara, third from left, dish out free sundae from giant sundae at the Fonda Fair Saturday. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

Singer said his interest in sand sculpting began when he was 8. He pointed out that the right mixture of sand and water is needed to keep the sculpture formed. He made sure the mixture stayed right to keep the sculpture’s form.

Singer is known for other sand sculpture–including the mermaid on the southside of the Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook bridge in Amsterdam.

At 1 p.m. near the entrance fairgoers were treated to giant sundae made of 30 pounds of ice cream, a gallon of cherries, eight chocolate syrup containers and a case of whipped topping, courtesy of the Montgomery County Farm Bureau, Montgomery County Dairy Princess Committee for fair Promotion and Education and Stewart’s.

The dairy princesses helped parcel out portions.

Back in the livestock buildings, Ashley Hulbert of Wild Flower Acres in Sprakers said she explained to visitors why some cattle were bigger than others and how to tell one kind from another.

A boy flies high on the Eurobungy at the Fonda Fair. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

Varnum Caster of Casview Farm, formerly in Fort Plain, said some of the kids wanted to know if it was OK to pet the animals.

Heather Pettite of Fort Plain brought her nice Braelyn Dillenbeck to the fair because “we love animals.” Braelyn got a pony ride from Adirondack Dreamercatcher Farm, Corinth.

Some of today’s events will be the sixth annual firemen’s field day competition at 2 and semi- and four-wheel diesel truck pulls at 6.

Children raise their hands to be chosen to cheer on the five pigs in Rosaire's Royal Racers pig races at the Fonda Fair Saturday. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

Braelyn Dillenbeck enjoys riding a horse at the Fonda Fair Saturday led by Regina Race, co-owner of Adirodack Dreamer Catcher Farm with Cyndie Ruggiero. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

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