Everything's fair: rides, piggies, music, cotton candy

It's that time of year when there seems to be some sort of fair or festival just about every week. This year was special in Albemarle– it marked the 21st birthday of the Albemarle County Fair.

The fair says its mission is "to promote agriculture and the community in a family atmosphere of learning and enjoyment." Strolling around eating our festival food, taking in the agricultural displays, and generally having a blast, we ran into scads of friends and acquaintances­ there was definitely a feeling of community.

It was just good old-fashioned family fun, riding the Ferris wheel, eating corn dogs, and looking at sheep, pigs, and cows. We even got to hear a fabulous band, the Gospel Four, who put on quite a show. All of this with the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains as backdrop, a lone silo rising up on one side, and pretty farmhouses dotting the land. It just doesn't get any better than that.