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Carol Perkins: Getting ready for The Pumpkin Festival

Pumpkin Festival in Edmonton is a tradition which continues to grow.
Next earlier column: Carol Perkins: A husband, Ted, ends up in doghouse Posted September 14, 2014

By Carol Perkins

The Pumpkin Festival is approaching and plans are underway. The chamber members do an outstanding job of preparing for this event each year and it continues to grow. Since I have been in business, I try to set up a booth in the courthouse yard with the other vendors (moving and setting up merchandise is not an easy job) and spend the day seeing familiar faces as well as those I haven't seen since last year. No one attends this festival without enjoying it. A time to shop, eat, and soak in the local color-that's what it is all about.

Susan and Carol will emsee the Womanless Beauty Pageant

This year I look forward to the Friday night before when Susan and I will be the emcees at the Womanless Beauty Pageant to be held at the middle school auditorium at 6:30. Men will be decked out in their best "ladies" attire, vying for cash prizes. Any man who would like to participate needs to show up at 5:00 to register or see Debbie Vroucher at Subway. What fun is in store for all of us. As usual, Susan and I have not one clue what we will say.

When Debbie approached us able being emcees, I thought back to the days of the Womanless Weddings and one especially comes to mind when men like Gilbert Wallace dressed up like little old ladies, brides, mother-of-the-bride, flower girls and guests and pretended the high school gym (the original MCHS gym) was the venue for a wedding and those watching soon forgot we weren't in a church. I remember one of the men played a baby and was pushed down the middle of the gym floor in a carriage. The gym was packed. I wish I could remember all the details.

What I remember better were the contests we had when I was in high school and then as a teacher. One such contest featured Jerry Irvin, Doug Clemmons (who wore Mrs. Ennis bathing suit), Rowe Harper, Russell VanZant, and a host of others (yearbook pictures tell the tale). They all wore bathing suits (one piece) and swim caps (every lady wore one at the pool) and the way they assumed the role of Miss America was floor stomping funny. Later those contests veered away from the Miss America type and were known as Mr. Ugly Contests where guys continued to dress as women but not necessarily in swimsuits. They wore evening gowns or cowgirl outfits or whatever their wives or girlfriends could find to fit them. Often they wore high heels to complement the outfit, along with gloves and earrings and nylon hose.

There is something downright funny about seeing local men or students totally out of character, dressed like their sisters, girlfriends, or mothers and parading. Some look more like ladies of the night! In regular life they wouldn't be caught dead like this, but for a show they can get into character. On the other side of this, no one would pay to see a woman dressed and acting like a man. It just wouldn't be funny.

I asked Guy if he would participate, knowing he would not. He doesn't have acting in his blood and you have to have a little of it to assume the role. However, one year at Halloween (when a group of us were in our thirties and used to get together at least once a month at someone's house) we woman decided to have a Halloween party where we dressed up as characters. It was one of my best memories. Carla and I dressed Guy as Edith Bunker. He wore my wig, a house dress with a belt, and would have worn heels if we had any large enough for him. That was his first and last time to step out of the box (whatever the box is). We had such fun because all of us were out of character assuming another character.

Friday night at the middle school will be great fun

Friday night at the middle school will be great fun. Admission is only a dollar, so support our local guys and come on out. Probably the funniest part of the night will be the question and answer session. All of the questions and answers will be unrehearsed and definitely spontaneous. Proceeds go to a local Girl Scout troop raising money to visit the home of the founder of the Girls Scouts in Savannah, GA. Let's help them take their trip. As for the Pumpkin Festival, Susan and I will be live on 99.1 from 10-11 so if you can't come, please tune in. Once again, Metcalfe County is the place to be the first weekend in October. Carol Perkins

(Ad) Those who would like t-shirts with the picture of the school (original MCHS) and their class year on the back will be able to purchase them at the Pumpkin Festival at my booth-Main Street Screenprinting)

This story was posted on 2014-09-28 06:21:31
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