Tuesday, September 30, 2008
The Turtle (Terrapin) Race
One of the highlights of the Walnut Festival is the Turtle Race (probably really a Terrapin race, since they are the land living kind and not the water variety - but whatever). It's kind of funny really - you go out and find a turtle, you keep him for a day or two, trying to convince him that the apples or grapes or whatever you put in there for him to eat are actually tasty and then you try even harder to keep him in that box. The last two years we've actually had escapees and they would have probably won the whole race because once they made it out of the box - we couldn't find them, anywhere. Then, to the Festival you go. It's probably the highlight of the turtle's year, where else does he get to see that many distant cousins?
So they stick a number on his back, then you have to wait your turn and they put him under a big bucket with lots of other friends and a heat lamp. And when they open it up - wow do those guys get moving........ok most of them get moving, some never even poke their little heads out.
Our little guy had a hole in his shell (you can see it in the pic below) - it looked like he make have been shot by a bb gun but that didn't slow him down. He was set to finish second in his heat and go to the finals, but decided to walk along the line instead of crossing it so he wasn't a winner - but at least he did have lots of people cheering for him and he was able to attend his family reunion.
Riley got two ride tickets and an hour or so playing with cousins (like sweet Hope below) while we were waiting for the race to start. It was fun, can't wait until next year when all the excitement starts again.
Do you guys have local festivals with fun (maybe odd to others) traditions?