Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Alaska State Fair Wrap-Up

There is no better place to show Alaska Far Away and Where the River Matanuka Flows than in the historic Wineck Barn at the Alaska State Fair. For two wonderful weeks we turned the barn into a place where people could learn about Matanuska Colony history. They could watch our films, peruse our historic displays, learn about Matanuska barns from experts Helen Hegener and Arnold Alanen, or simply stop by and visit for awhile. And this year we had a special treat: every morning busloads of third-grade students from local schools came to the Wineck Barn to learn about Colony history.

We have posted many photos on our Facebook page, but here are a few of our favorite memories from the 2013 Alaska State Fair. If you missed us, come visit us in the Barn next year!

The gardeners at the Alaska State Fair do  spectacular job - the flowers are one of the "WOW!" factors at the Fair.

Another "WOW!" factor at the Fair: the giant vegetables! Here we are checking out this year's prize-winning Giant Cabbage, grown by a descendant of Mrs. Frances Dinkel, who is featured in Alaska Far Away.

This year we added a "Colony Kids Corner" in the Wineck Barn. Kids loved to color pictures from the Matanuska Colony.

Above and below: Third grade students visiting the Wineck Barn to learn about the Matanuka Colony.

Above: The historic Wineck Barn, seen through spectacular sweet pea plants that had grown seven feel tall.
Below: Helen Hegener, author of The Matanuska Colony Barns, giving a tour of the Wineck Barn.

Wayne Bouwens, a "colony kid" who is featured in Alaska Far Away, spoke to one of our third grade classes in the Wineck Barn, sharing stories of growing up doing chores in a barn just like this one.

One of our favorite booths at the Alaska State Fair: Salmon Express! These nice folks make terrific salmon quesadillas, salmon chowder, and lots of other great salmon dishes.

Professor Arnold Alanen giving a presentation about Matanuska Colony architecture in the Wineck Barn at the Alaska State Fair.
Professor Alanen was joined by "colony kid" Earl Wineck, whose father built the Wineck Barn in 1936.