Salem (Oregon), as I frequently point out, doesn't have a lot going on compared to its much cooler city cousins an I-5 hour drive north and south -- Portland and Eugene.
But we do have the Salem Art Fair, a first class event, that's beautifully nestled in the towering trees of Bush Park. In the northwest is there a nicer setting for an art fair? Can't believe there is. This is how the fair looks walking up to it from High Street.
This always is the scariest sight of the fair for me: a sign at Brie Kriebel's booth that sends anticipatory chills up Laurel's clothing-loving spine, and leads me to ponder how female-centric art fair events like this one are.
(As for me, I bought one t-shirt that featured a rather abstract image of a creature that I like to think is an angry, biting house cat, since that reminds me of a not-so-beloved family pet feline, Taco; after he departed, my hands and arms had a chance to heal.)
Every year new artists are featured at the juried Salem Art Fair. I'd never seen these metal cactus sculptures before. Not here. Not anywhere. Creative, but I wondered how they would fit in with typical Oregon landscaping.
Laurel and I spent three hours volunteering at the Friends of Marion County booth, soliciting signatures for a ballot initiative seeking to enlarge the county Board of Commissioners from three to five members.
It's a great idea.
Check out the Have a Voice Everyone web site, which describes how Marion County would be much better off with five non-partisan commissioners elected by district, rather than the current three at-large political positions.
We got many more signatures than I expected. Even though the booth was in an out-of-the-way corner of the fair, response to Laurel's entreaties was great.
She's a much better salesperson than I am -- as is Roger Kaye, president of Friends of Marion County, who also had a knack for attracting registered voters over to the booth.
My specialty was pointing at the line where they signed, muttering "written signature... date... print your signature... address" at appropriate moments.
Oh, and also walking over to the "Moo" shake stand when we needed caloric sustenance. Political activism requires all sorts of skills.