NEARCATION - Like a vacation only near to home, shorter, and much less expensive

 Yesterday Charlie and I took a nearcation. We went to the Texas State Fair.  It was a wonderful adventure that lasted from 1 PM until 8 PM when we got home.  We took the Dart train.  It was easy, relaxing and fun. From Garland, there is only one transfer at Pearl Station and voila! We were delivered to the world of Big Tex--and also our world for the next almost six hours.  Big Tex is a 55-foot (17 m) tall figure and marketing icon of the annual State Fair of Texas.  As we learned from a sign at the Fair, Big Tex was born in 1952, ten years after the Corn Dog was invented.

The Texas State Fair is unique for a number of reasons.  First of all, it is the biggest state fair in the USA.  Second of all, it is located on a historical site--the grounds of the 1936 Centennial built to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Texas independence from Mexico.  As it was built in the middle of the Great Depression, these grounds are a monument to hope and a tribute to human achievement.  You don’t have to visit these grounds only once a year, Fair Park is open throughout the year and it includes the Children’s Aquarium, The Women’s Building, Texas Discovery Gardens, and more.  Fair Park was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1986. It is home to the nation's largest collection of publicly owned Art Deco buildings in the U.S. and one of the largest collections of 1930s art.

The six female figures that flank the entrance to the Hall of State building at Dallas’ Fair Park are the work of Raoul Josset and Lawrence Tenney Stevens. The 20-foot statues (on 12-foot pedestals) face each other and represent the five nations (and one would-be nation) that are more frequently represented by the “six flags” of Texas.

  It was a wonderful, magical day filled with too many adventures to post here--the great Mexican food we ate, the fancy electric cars we saw,  the John Deere zero turn mowers, the sheep, the baby pigs, etc.  I look forward to another nearcation soon.

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