The Day Dawns

posted in: 2017 | 0

Evington Village Fete & Show 2017

Phew! What a week! Monday was damp and iffy, Tuesday torrential rain and Wednesday wet again. Can we hold the fete if this weather continues? Organisers fingernails chewed to the knuckle. Poor old Parks trying to cut the village green without drowning and succeeding through sheer willpower. Thursday dawned brighter and we were back thinking it might be dry on Saturday and Yes, we can hold the fete.

Friday and suddenly all that planning turns into action. Anna and her crew start to set out the Village Hall and do the basic preparations for the sandwich making, cake cutting, scone bashing, jam spooning, price marking and table laying that precedes the mayhem that turns into fresh food on Saturday. The doors open at twelve and they must be ready.

The marquee arrives and their team begins building 5000 square feet of canvas. It houses the Show and the Information point (where are those signs?) and the undercover stalls. Fifty tables and hundred chairs arrive – should we have ordered more chairs says Chairman John under his breath? Can you tell talk from mutter says someone else?

How many stalls, where are they going, who need double plots, First Aid (in the shade?) Ice Cream definitely in the shade, Blood Bikes, Tennis, Birds, Drums, how do we fit them all in? Michael is the man with a plan and 6 cans of marker paint. The grid takes shapes and the plots are numbered. The Port-a-Loos arrive and are strategically placed.  The area for the Band to play in is marked and the posts are driven in. The Scarecrows need posts too. Ben and the gang start to festoon the hedgerows with bunting and the Green is beginning to look alive with expectation.

Katherine sets out the Show tent and Nick, our local Man & Van, gathers all the display boards and signposts and all the other things that have been squirreled away until next year. Security arrive (we don’t seriously think anyone will pinch the tent but our insurers are less confident)

The day dawns. The man from traffic management has already set up his signs to close the road and the no waiting cones are out. It is DRY and a hint breezy but holds lots of promise for a fine day. All of the brilliant people who have managed to find an hour or two or even the whole day turn up and begin to direct traffic, fetch, carry, erect the gazebo for the bookstall and set out the books Chris has hoarded over the past year (giving Fiona her front room back), set up the Tombola for Hannah & Steph. Exhibits arrive and logged and positioned – 330 and counting with over 100 classes and something for everyone.

Bouncy Castle and slides arrive and the stalls begin to set up. The Green becomes a melting pot of cars and gazebos and plants and things for sale in all shapes and sizes. The cars are removed, order is restored and a fully-fledged village fete and show emerges just in time for the official opening at 12 noon.

The children have lots to do and see.  Blood Bikes to sit on, Have-a-Go circus to try, plates to spin and stilts to walk, tennis to play, owls to see and stroke, and drums to beat, slides to climb and whizz down, and Punch & Judy to enjoy. And ice cream!

Monica Winfield and Ady Dayman from Radio Leicester come and join in. Ady answers gardening questions and Monica swaps stories. The Show tent opens after the Judges have deliberated and made their awards.

The Band plays in the sunshine and The Corn Dolly man sings folk songs and demonstrates his talent in making dolls from straw. The Village Hall has a constant stream of thirsty hungry customers; those needing a quieter place seek out The Parish Centre for tea and cake. The Church is open with an organ recital, singing and guitar playing and a “pop-up” monastery outside. The Chapel enjoys many visitors for its display of old Evington.

Raffle tickets are drawn at 4.30. Cups, awards and prizes from the Show are declared and photographs of the winners taken. Lots of new faces!

And then it is all over. It has been a glorious day and we do hope you came and that you enjoyed it. There will be pictures on the website shortly. If you couldn’t make it we are sorry. If you would like to be involved then please contact John Sloan on (0116) 2412210 – we need a strong committee and it will be fun.