Tuesday, August 9

Corn Festival, Y'All

We return to the Olathe Sweet Corn Festival which celebrates its 20th anniversary with all-you-can eat corn and everything else American: corn dogs, country bands, US flags, slushies, military and religious booths, SUVs, corn-eating contests, enormous families, tatoos, cowboy hats and boots, iPhones and apple pie. Teenagers slink about; couples hold hands ; girls wear ripped jean-shorts up to their fannyline despite the family theme of it all. Despite a cloak of self-perceived invisibility, the young people on display, as it always is.

Last time , the headliner was Shania Twain and, since I had never heard of her, we did not stick around. Twain has sold over 40 M country albums. This year it is '70s rock band "Guess Who" , famous for '70 #1 "American Woman" which the band has lived on ever since. Richard Nixon invited Guess Who to the White House as long as they did not play "American Woman."

We find a morning spot underneath a canvas umbrella and watch the Shakespeares run back and forth and back and forth to the various food stalls - popcorn! Water Mellon! Hot dogs! Ice creams! Lemon sluice! Meat legs ! It's all a bit overwhelming in 100F+ heat so I read and observe. This an honest effort, a successful festival, and good vibe place.

"In 1992, a few insightful people in the small western Colorado town of Olathe, decided to celebrate the community's agricultural jewel... "Olathe Sweet" sweet corn, by organizing the first Olathe Sweet Corn Festival. This hometown crop was and continues to be more than just another of the many agriculture products of the region. Sweet corn is the crop that has kept this rural American community alive when other efforts were failing. Indeed, the citizens of the Town of Olathe, Colorado had cause for celebration."
--Olathe Sweet Corn Festival" Official History