Sunday, February 3, 2013

57th Annual Wiarton Willie Festival

Today we loaded up the kids, ignored the snow squall warnings, and headed off to the 57th Annual Wiarton Willie Festival. This yearly celebration is held to honor a groundhog that can predict the future.  Yeah, I know.

If we had gone yesterday, we could have seen the magical rodent make his prediction (a "counterfactual" statement, but true nonetheless.  Phew, crow-barred that one in), but we didn't.  We are going to have to settle for the post-prediction consolation activities, where the town tries to maximize their revenue from this bizarre premise.

Those familiar with Bill Murray's masterpiece, Groundhog Day, are probably hoping for some fantastical tale of romance and repetition, but I'm afraid you will be disappointed.  However, we were not at all.  It turns out they put on a pretty good show for the kids up there in Willie country, with lots of swag and games to keep them happy.

After running the gauntlet of the port-a-potties (whose bright idea was it to put them right next to the front doors anyway?), and signing the kids up for the Pizza Eating Contest, our first pleasant surprise was the Shaker Maze, a charming little distraction that involves searching amongst thousands of salt-and-pepper shakers for the five listed on your card in the fastest time you can.  Sounds stupid?  Actually it wasn't, it was kinda fun.

There were loads of little games for the kids to play, like a mini-putt thing, plinko, and tic-tac-toe.

Tic Tac Toe! How Exciting!

A petting zoo populated by a sheep, two lambs (one of them evil, see below), a rabbit and a chicken.  Actually that was kinda pathetic.  The Evil Lamb didn't even try to eat us once, despite the kids offering up their fingers as... erm... finger food

Ahh! Evil Lamb!

At the end, we got to watch the kids gorge themselves on greasy New Orleans Pizza without vomiting it back up, for no monetary gain or even empty glory.  Which was fun.

Pizza Eating Contest!

Upon leaving, we discovered those pesky snow squalls had decided to put in an appearance, and we had fun betting on how many of the vehicles overtaking the snow plow in front of us would crash and burn.  The results were... none.  Pity, would have rounded the day off nicely.

Fun Drive Home!
A good day out, especially for the kids, but I'm still left wishing it was more like this:

Oh, and the rat didn't see his shadow and predicts an early spring, if you believe any of that nonsense.  Yay!  Early Spring!

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