Saturday, May 21, 2011

Annie Oakley and Foxtails

I am again surprised by the city of Los Banos.  Seems even the schools do things differently.  Yesterday we were walking the Rail Trail to Henry Miller Square.  Center of the square is a nice statue of him on a horse with a couple cattle drinking from a pond.

Surrounding the square several people were setting up tables with projects. Apparently the entire Junior Class each picked a person of historical interest, made a project board with facts and pictures, then dressed up as that individual.  Each table had a bell of some sort.  We were required to ring the bell for them to tell us who they were.  Ring the bell again and they would tell you about an event in their life.  Ring the bell again and they would tell you more.  You get the picture .... I was fascinated.  Their outfits were sooo creative.  From Davy Crockett and Annie Oakley to June Carter Cash (who sang her responses), Orphan Annie, the first ever female General, Clara Barton, Harriet Beecher Stowe, etc. This picture is of Albert Einstein.  Although not the best costume, it was the only picture I could get due to the crowds.  EVERY high school should do this!!!

From there we were off to the Wool Growers Restaurant.  If you are ever in this area, you must stop in for some of the best Basque food in the country .. at the very least, you won't go away hungry.  Food is served family style from an entree only menu and went something like this:   bread, soup, salad, wine, beans, potatoe salad, lamb stew with potatoes and carrots, french fries and your choice of prime rib, steak, pork chops (which I had and were so big that out of two, I brought one and a half home) tri tip or chicken.  As long as you can eat it, they keep bringing it.  I have been to this restaurant many times over the last 40 years.  The food is just as good now as then!

On the schedule today is of course more food.  A Basque Festival is being held here at the fairgrounds.  For $18.00 you could purchase lunch ... the entertainment and dancing to accordion music were free.  We opted for the entertainment.
After the dancing they had wood chopping contests.  I thought this was only at logger jamborees ... but here is the evidence.

I have to say they performed pretty much in slow motion compared to what I have seen, but since they chopped through THREE logs the size of the one this guy is standing on, I finally decided they were biding their time.  The top guy won ... his prize you ask?  They passed around a red beret and your donations were it.  To end the day, I took the Nikon out and took a few quick images of things I would never normally photograph.  I mean really???  Foxtails????  

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