Our son, his friend, the Man of Steel and I spent an afternoon at the Iowa State Fair. While there, I compiled these top ten tips for fair goers silly enough to schedule their visits when the temperature hovers around 90° and the humidity is nearly 100%.
10. A ride on the tram lifts passengers high enough to enjoy whatever slight breeze is blowing. However, passengers who are afraid of heights will get hot and bothered enough to cancel out the benefits of a cooling breeze.
9. Stroll through the Varied Industries Building for two reasons: First, the air conditioning is heavenly. Secondly, you can visit the De Vries Woodcrafting booth and admire their beautiful furniture while testing their chairs and surreptitiously rest your tired feet.
8. Women are well-advised to wear shorts, a skirt, or sundress when the temperature is near 90° and humidity is high. Capris will be too hot.
7. You know the people that use big sticks to direct cars to the $5 parking spots on their lawns? I think they do that to keep the air moving. So put a collapsible yard stick in your fanny pack so you can cool down whenever you want. And bonk annoying people if need be. It’s a win-win!
6. It is perfectly acceptable to join the children cooling off at the spray fountain. Just don’t knock them out of the way or strip down to your underwear. Even if your bra and panties are more generously than the uniforms worn by the women’s beach volleyball teams at the Olympics, you could get arrested for indecent exposure.
5. If you watch the breeding swine auction in the Hall of Champions, stand directly under the giant ceiling fan. If possible stand next to someone with swine breeding expertise so you have some idea of what’s going on.
4. If you go to the meat goat judging, repeat #5. But stand next to someone with meat goat expertise because pigs and goats are totally different breeds of cats.
3. While walking by the butter cow, imagine standing beside Bessie in her 40° cooler just in case the power of suggestion actually works.
2. Stop by the horse expo arena between shows when you are hot and tired. It’s free, it’s air conditioned, the seats are comfy, and you can watch a tractor go round and round and round watering and preparing the dirt. It’s mesmerizing.
1. When you’re drenched with sweat, a raspberry-cider slushy from the Agriculture Building tastes divine. It also turns your tongue bright red. So you can put in your Dracula teeth and look highly authentic.
Bonus Tip: No matter how hot it is, you must stand in the heat and take pictures for your young grandchildren obsessed with large machinery. Because that’s what’s grandparents do.