The kids of summer

Wyatt, left and Joel were busy cooling down with chocolate malts Sunday when this reporter interrupted their moment to ask about their county fair experiences. They cooperated wonderfully. Photo by MaryHelen Swanson

By MaryHelen Swanson

In spite of the extreme heat, youngsters had a great time at the Chisago County Fair last week.

Take Wyatt Benjamin, age 6, and Joel Mellum, age 8. While people all around them were fanning and complaining about the heat, the two enjoyed refreshing chocolate malts Sunday afternoon. They had just played in Saturday’s sawdust pile behind the stage where the talent contest was about to start.

When asked if they were enjoying the fair, the two nodded. What else can you do with a mouthful of frosty malt?

Their visit to the county fair had included the following: both had been to the demolition derby Saturday night, both had looked at the animals in the 4-H barns. Wyatt had gone on some rides and played some games and won a “really, really fuzzy gorilla… and a really, really fuzzy bear that sheds a lot.”

The two had participated in the pedal tractor pull and Wyatt won his age group. That netted him a nice trophy,

Cousins Shaine Reemtsma, 6, and 5-year-old Kyson Christianson kept family farm traditions alive on Saturday by showing these well-groomed calves in an open novice class at the fair. The animals were provided by the kids’ grandpas Joe and Bill, of Shafer-based Mallery Jersey Farms, who have been showing livestock for 55 years at the Minnesota State Fair, according to Grandma Barbara. Photo by Jon Tatting

Both boys had also been to the tractor pull and the motocross events.

And now here they were, cooling off under the tent at the stage area where six groups were going to share their talent.

But, sitting on the bench was a lot to ask of boys with lots of energy, even in 94 degree heat. So, with a smudge of chocolate malt on Wyatt’s face and chocolate malt drippings on Joel’s white T-shirt, the boys were off again to dig and play in the sawdust pile, on the chance that a dime or quarter had been missed during the Kids Day activities.

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