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  • Stephen D'Agostino

The Reading Fall Fair is Saturday

Last week, I commented on how much I love this time of the year because there are so many outdoor events, citing three happening in just nine days. I’m going to repeat two of them because they have yet to happen. However, I am also going to mention three more events happening in the first two weeks of October. Here’s a pro tip for reading this column: get your calendar out of the drawer or up on your phone. You’ll have a lot to note.

First, tonight is the final Puddledock Park Party of 2019. The Reading Recreation Commission is going out with a bang, showing the movie Night At The Museum outdoors. But before that happens, we’ll be making s’mores.

I don’t know which makes me more excited. OK, I do: the movie. However, at last year’s s’mores Puddledock Park Party, I learned of many other ways to make these treats. I thought the inclusion of peanut butter was the be-all-end-all of upscaling a s'more until Boolie Sluka introduced me to the idea of replacing the chocolate with Nutella. As if I needed another reason to love that spread! I’m looking forward to learning even more inventive ways to make this gooey treat!

Back to the movie. Since the nights are getting dark so early now, we’ll be able to start the movie shortly after the party gets started, which is at 6pm. Get there early so you can make your s’mores and claim your spot on the lawn. Don’t forget something to sit on, some bug spray, and blankets in case the night is chilly.

This Saturday is the long-awaited Reading Fall Fair and Ducky Derby. If you like the Rec Commission’s Facebook page and/or read Front Porch Forum, you’ve been seeing a lot of announcements about this event this week. So why not one more in this column? The fair runs from 10am to 2pm and takes place at the school. We’ll have live music by Rose Hip Jam, a petting zoo, carnival games, face painting, the maple jug challenge, touch-a-truck with lots of fire and rescue equipment, lunch food for purchase, and the build-a-scarecrow contest.

What will your scarecrow look like? Will it be classic like in The Wizard of Oz? Sticking with a movie theme, will you be inspired by The Nightmare Before Christmas? Will you do something completely different, foregoing the traditional stuffed clothes and present a scarecrow that blows in the wind. I am sure there is a Pinterest board for scarecrow ideas that can help inspire you.

The Reading Recreation Commission will supply the clothes and the hay. You supply the head and any other clothes you want to include to make your vision a reality. These scarecrows will be displayed on Route 106 through Halloween. The Rec Commission will supply the poles. However, if your scarecrow idea requires your scarecrow to be leaning, kneeling, sitting, or blowing in the breeze, feel free to supply your own supports.

Onto October! Next Saturday is the Spring Brook Farm Open House. If you’ve been, you know how fun this event is. You and your kids can pick apples, take a turn at the cider press, and go on a hayride. Kids can go their own way and get their faces painted, work on some craft projects, visit the petting zoo, or play games. Adults, in the meantime, can watch cheese-making in progress, tour the farm, sample and buy cheese, syrup, and maple cream. The family can come together for lunch. Of course, these events aren't age restricted. Kids can watch cheese making, and adults can get their faces painted, right? Why not?

The next weekend brings us a double shot of events on Sunday. The PTO welcomes the community to the Reading Elementary School on Sunday, October 13, from 8am until 10am, for the annual Leaf Peeper Breakfast. There will be homemade pancakes with local maple syrup, bacon, eggs, pastries, fruit, and more. The price is $8 for adults, $5 for kids, and $20 for families.

The PTO is looking for donations of eggs, juice, and fruit. If you can donate any of these or your time, please contact Barbara Lord at

The very same day, the Reading Volunteer Fire Department and Reading Fire Department Auxiliary will be hosting Reading's Fire Prevention Fair from 11am to 2pm at the Fire Station. At this event, you can learn fire prevention facts while having fun.

Fun, you say, while learning about such an important topic? Yes! The kids can try on firefighter gear, have their picture taken with a fire truck, tour the firehouse and then the Bounce house. Interspersed with all this activity, there will be information on finding common fire hazards at home, tips on fire safety, fire extinguisher demonstrations, and a chance to make your family's fire safety plan. You can also get free smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. There will be lunch, too. Think about it: attend both the Pancake Breakfast and the Fire Prevention Fair, and you'll only need to cook dinner at home!

That’s the news from Reading! See you next week!

This column originally appeared in The Vermont Standard on September 26, 2019.

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