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LOS ANGELES COUNTY FAIR, POMONA, 1954

Los Angeles County Fair

This slide is marked “Our first trip to the fair.” Casual by most 1954 dress standards, a gentleman clad in a butter colored t-shirt, khakis and a ball cap takes a gander at the saw-tooth edged directional signs. There are so many things listed for him to choose from. What should he see next – the children’s nursery? Lagoon? Million Dollar Antique Display? Fashion show? Domestic arts? I wonder if he knows that it’s the largest county fair in the country.

Fifty years later, last Saturday in the blazing Pomona Valley heat, I led a historic tour of the event that I look forward to every year even more than Christmas, yes, the Los Angels County Fair. There is little there that doesn’t inspire my imagination and make my spirit soar. But, if I had to choose my favorite fair attractions they would have to be the sales people that hard-sell and demonstrate all those “miracle products” like carpet cleaners, ricer-dicer-slicers, and no-stick fry pans. It’s living theater at its very best.

As I was leaving the fair I spotted a young family with one of those monster red wagons stacked four feet high with boxes of those “miracle products.” It was the perfect end to a perfect day at the fair