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The Algonquin Mill Festival in Carrollton, OH

October 10th, 2011

Mr Chiots and I have a fall tradition; to kick off the fall season, we always attend the Algonquin Mill Festival with some friends. It’s an old timey festival featuring lots of steam engines, the main one being a big grain mill which grinds flour that you can buy at the festival. They also use this flour in the pancakes that a local club makes and sells. We always kick off our time with a big plate of hotcakes, which we smother in homemade maple syrup that we take in a jar.

After a hearty breakfast we spend taking in all the sights: the old saw mill cutting logs, antique farm and garden equipment, local artisans are doing everything from chair caning to wool rug hooking. I set up a slide show so you could see all the sights. To view in full screen click on the icon in the top left hand corner, click the same icon to exit full screen mode.

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Do you have any great fall festivals in your area? or any thing you do to kick off the season?

Algonquin Mill Festival

October 6th, 2008

If you live in NE Ohio, this coming weekend (October 10-12) is the Algonquin Mill Festival. It’s always a must visit for us every year. If you’re free head down for a few hours. We’ll be heading down Sunday afternoon for sure.

It’s a great little festival with steam engines large & small, a steam powered saw mill which is incredible and kind of scary all at the same time. They sell delicious pancakes made with freshly ground flour from the mill, so make sure you save room for those. They also have horses pressing sorghum that’s boiled down into sorghum molasses that you can buy (which makes a delicious sorghum pecan pie – no corn syrup needed).

Anyone else have any local fall festival that’s a must visit?

The Green Fair

September 14th, 2008

We try to be pretty environmentally friendly here at Chiot’s Run. Our gardens are all organic, no chemicals, no pesticides, only all natural products are used. We have a rain water collection system and we save some gray water for our watering needs. We recycle what we can and try to reuse products as well. I’m always thrilled when I find other doing the same. I was pleasantly surprised by all the green I found at the Wayne County Fair last Sunday. In the school art barns some of the projects were about recycling and being more environmentally friendly.

There were little sprinkles of green throughout the fair (though no recyclables trash cans were to be found, we’ll have to work on that).

As we were leaving we noticed the Sustainable Energy Network Booth, so I stopped to pick up some literature. They had a small solar panel and a wind turbine powering their booth.

Hopefully this will raise awareness in Wayne County on the importance of being environmentally friendly. Now, I wonder when they’ll have an organic produce barn?

Here are 2 of the handouts I picked up at the fair. If you live in NE Ohio, you might be interested in attending a few of the events listed in the Greening Your Home Series. The Ohio Solar Tour is October 4-5, I may be touring a few of the homes.

SEN Directory of Resources, Incentives and Support

Greening Your Home Series

This concludes our Wayne County Fair coverage, tomorrow we will resume regular posting.

The Grand Fair Finale: Lerch’s Donuts

September 13th, 2008

If you’ve never been to the Wayne County Fair you’ve probably never had Lerch’s Donuts. They are famous at the fair (the box even says “Wayne County Fair Style”).

Lerch’s Donuts was founded in 1932 by John Lerch, Sr., when he developed a method of frying soft cake donuts that are not greasy at his downtown Wooster bakery. In 1934, he began producing Lerch’s Donuts at the Wayne County fair, soon becoming the #1 food vendor at the fair. Many things have changed since the 1930s; the bakery has closed, but not the recipe or popularity of Lerch’s Donuts.

Ever since I was a little girl, I remember going to the fair and eating Lerch’s Donuts as soon as we arrived, there’s a booth right inside the front door and we always bought a few boxes before we left. This year was no different. Now Mr. Chiots is a big donut connoisseur, I remember when I first introduced him to Wayne County Fair style donuts so many years ago and he’s been hooked ever since. (did I mention Mr Chiots really likes donutes?)

This year we waited until we were ready to leave to pick up our donuts (didn’t want to carry them around all day). So I got out my money and stood in line-the LOOOOOOOONG line.

I ordered 2 dozen donuts: 1 regular sugar, 1 cinnamon sugar. You can even walk around the side of the building and watch them make the donuts, boy they sure can crank out those donuts.

As soon as we got our donuts we cracked open the box and each enjoyed one. MMMMM, tastes like we’re at the Wayne County Fair!

Now if you want to try a Lerch’s Donut you’ll have to go the Wayne County Fair or spot one of the 3 trailers that they move around to various events in Wayne County (it’s rumored that they’re branching out and have a stand a several other local county fairs). So what’s your favorite fair food?

The Great Pumpkin

September 12th, 2008

The fair is full of flowers & veggies galore. My mom always likes to go to the fair on opening day so the flowers are still fresh. We were there the day after so a few of them were already wilted, but most of them were still nice. There were the usual zinnias, sunflowers and hydrangeas and a few interesting flowers I had never seen before.

Poor Mr Chiots had to leave the flower barn early because all the pollen was making his allergies act up. Is it any wonder when this is what it looked like aisle after aisle?

I think my favorite thing about the fair is the vegetable & grain barn. This is where they keep The Great Pumpkin, the heaviest pumpkin grown in Wayne County.

There is one family in Wayne County that always wins the pumpkin contest. So how big was the award winner this year? This is the weight written on the pumpkin.

The vegetable barn is full of fruits & veggies of all shapes and sizes. The biggest and the smallest the ugliest and the most beautiful of each variety, they fill table after table.

There were also tomatoes galore, big ones, small ones, yellow ones, red ones, fat ones, skinny ones, smooth ones and bumpy ones. Many of them were heirloom tomatoes, which was nice to see.

I was glad to see some San Marzano Tomatoes. I’m planning on growing these next year for sauces.

And check out the size of this beet!

If only all of our harvest baskets from our gardens looked like this one. So what’s your favorite vegetable? I’ve always been a fan of The Great Pumpkins.

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.