Night Time At The Kern County Fair

Carnival rides are a main attraction at The Kern County Fair. The fair turns 100 in 2016, something lifestyles and entertainment reporter Kelly Ardis is excited about.

Carole Lynn Anderson mailed us her memory:

It was the early fall of 1971 when I was taken to my first Kern County Fair. I had moved from the high desert and had spent my sophomore year not knowing anyone!

The West High Viking Marching Band was practicing for our first home game my junior year. I was tapped on the back by a saxophone player who stood behind me in the “W.” By the end of our practice, I was asked out — my first date in Bakersfield.

The fair was quite an experience for me — with all the lights and sounds and wonderful smells that are so typically “fair time” — caramel corn, cinnamon rolls with cream cheese frosting, the screams and laughter of the riders and brilliant neon colors of the rides in the carnival, the sounds (and smells) of all the animals in the 4-H and FFA barns — it was all new to me.

Added to the fact that this was my first date ever — it was a fun Friday night.

At the end of the evening, we had those silly photo pictures taken, and then I had to get home before 11:00 (I think my dad kinda scared him!). We ended up dating our junior and senior years and got married between BC and apprentice training.

Taking our daughter to the fair was always a priority — go during the week and have dinner there and see all the animals and take her on the little kids’ rides. It was a sweet and special time for us.

Unfortunately we would later divorce — but we would both take her to the fair on different nights. Her dad would always take her on all the rides I wouldn’t (which was nearly all of them).

As she grew older, her dance studio and baton groups would perform, so there’s another day at the fair. When she was in junior high and high school, adding her cheer groups gave us still another day or evening in performance. It was a busy crazy couple of weeks to make sure none of her groups conflicted. But it was great fun.

As the years went by, my daughter tried very hard to get the chance to take her kids to the fair — and though they live close by — their schedules never seem to work out. When Connor and Colton do get to attend the Kern County Fair, you can be sure I’ll go with them and buy them a cinnamon roll and caramel corn (I will leave the rides to their mom!).

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