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Dear Customers,

             I read a lot of books.  I’m what’s referred to as a voracious reader – been that way since I was six.  At any given time, I may have three or more books that I’m reading at the same time.  So, when I say, “I don’t exactly remember where I read this or who wrote it”, that’s probably the reason.  A few weeks ago, I read a statement that after I paused to actually consider the author’s meaning, I found it to be pretty much right on the nose, at least as far as I’m concerned!  And because I can’t remember where I read it so that I can go back and get it word-for-word, I’m going to paraphrase here.  The author said, in so many words, that “life can be divided into two parts; anticipation and memory”. 

            That may sound simplistic but when you stop to consider an entire chunk of time, let’s say, the past 365 days, we find ourselves either looking forward to something; the coming weekend, a birthday, a vacation, next Tuesday, etc. or we’re remembering one of those same milestone events!  I’ve also noticed that when something that occurred in my past painted me in a bad light, had a disappointing ending or just plain didn’t measure up I’m less likely to be able to remember it later.  I guess there’s only so much room in the cerebral archives so maybe my brain culls out the bad memories and consigns them to the mental scrap heap.

            Often, the anticipation is far better than the reality!  We spend the month between Thanksgiving and Christmas listening to Christmas music, decorating our homes both inside and out and enjoying those same Christmas movies, animated classics and holiday specials that we’ve seen a hundred times already.  Anticipation runs at a fever pitch for the entire month.  Then, when Christmas morning finally comes, it’s often a huge let-down.  The packages you spent weeks buying, wrapping and hiding lay strewn across the floor amid shreds of colored paper.  The day itself usually involves travel to a dinner or the preparation for one.  Then the next day, it’s back to work and all that eagerness and excitement is relegated to the part of the brain reserved for memories.

            The McKean County Fair celebrates its 112th birthday this week.  The anticipation has been building for months across the county as 4H youth ready their animals for the auction, exhibitors put the finishing touches on their crafts or talents while new buildings have been raised on the grounds and others have been razed!  The five queen contestants, representing the five largest towns in the county, have attended countless dinners and functions spanning the entire summer.  All the activity and planning culminates this week with more than six days of fun, food and friendship out on Route 46. 

            This year’s fair features the Sunshine Shows Carnival, drag racing, demolition derby, battle of the bands and stock car racing.  In addition, the vocal talents of Morgan Wallen will be featured on Friday night at 8pm on the Mini-Stage.  Then at 8pm on Saturday night, the week’s festivities culminate in the Queen Coronation ceremonies.  If none of the above interests you, perhaps you’re a stroller and a sampler.  Somebody, much like myself, that just enjoys walking the grounds, visiting with friends you maybe haven’t seen in a while – and above all, sampling the various delicious treats available – many of which are only available once a year!

            If you’d like to support a worthwhile cause and taste some of the most delicious Italian sausage available anywhere, stop in at the Smethport Sports Booster trailer and have some lunch, dinner or perhaps an after-dinner snack!  All proceeds go to benefit Smethport High School athletics.  The booth is maintained and staffed by the athletes’ parents so you’ll be sure to see someone you know!