GREENVILLE — The Fair arrived a little early for the Brethren Retirement Community, complete with all the fixings, last week.
While the BRC runs shuttles to and from the Great Darke County Fair through its entire run, some residents are not able to participate. The solution is to bring a bit of the Fair to them.
Appropriately called Fair Day — a tradition that has been going on 20 years — residents have an opportunity to enjoy fair-related activities right in their own backyard.
Under the direction of Melinda Harter, supervisor of activities, along with 20-plus volunteers, games, prizes, animals, displays, and goodies, greeted resident fair-goers on Aug. 9.
Along the midway, residents took part in games such as Plinko (a resident favorite and created by Harter with the help of a handy resident) a fishbowl game, a bottle toss and ring toss.
Prizes included stuffed animals, soda pop, candy, and beaded necklaces, the latter a resident favorite, too.
The Brick Room was set to resemble the coliseum everyone knows and loves at the Great Darke County Fair. Displays included paintings, knitting, quilts, flower arrangements, furniture, miniature farm equipment, and canned goods created or shared by residents. A long table was set for everyone to enjoy elephant ears while the community bank offered popcorn.
Outside on the patio, residents were able to visit with not only a dog named Vinnie, but Gerald the calf, rabbits, two guinea pigs, hens, and a chicken.
The residents also enjoyed snow cones.
Harter, who has been with the BRC for six years, said Fair Day is one of the most anticipated events of the year.
“The folks are so excited, they’ve been talking about it in the week leading up to it,” said Harter before the event got underway on Friday. She shared how residents had asked what kind of animals and prizes they will have this year.
Along with residents, Fair Day was open to their families so everyone could participate and have fun.
This year, the Oakland Church of the Brethren donated prizes, food items, snow cone machine, and its all-related fixings, along with volunteers helping to transport residents to the event.
“We’re just so grateful for all the help that everybody gives us,” said Harter. “The community and the staff, everyone just pitches in and makes the day extra fun.”
Reach reporter Bethany J. Royer-DeLong at 937/548-3330 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more news, features, and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.