Guest Post: Fabulous Fun Fair

Angela Pounders joins us again for a heads up on the upcoming Fun Fair at Central Library. Pick up your free tickets beginning tomorrow.
I was so excited a couple of years ago when I saw that Central Library in Manassas was having a Fun Fair for its young patrons, ages 2-6 years old. My daughter was barely 1 ½ years old and I really wanted to take her (even though I am definitely a rules girl!) because it sounded so much fun! 
Needless to say, we waited until the following summer to partake in the fun.
The library describes this event as:  “A fun-filled hour of games designed especially for some of our smallest patrons. All of the games are non-competitive and everyone gets a prize!”
This year, the event will be held on Wednesday, August 8 at 10:30am.  Tickets are required.  You may pick up FREE tickets beginning Wednesday, August 1.  Children must be accompanied by an adult.  (Seems like a given, but this is actually stated!)
When we entered the Community Room, we received 10 tickets (at least that’s what I remember). Each game cost one ticket to play and you had to save one ticket for your prize at the end. That said, each individual game did not have a prize, but for one ticket, each child got to pick something out of the treasure chest at the end.
Just like any fair, the children had to wait in line for their turns. Young volunteers and a few ladies of the library staff ran the games. Everyone was very patient with the children – especially with the younger ones who didn’t always want to stand on the designated lines to play the games.  Unlike regular fairs, there was not an emphasize on competition, but rather on having fun and doing your best.
My daughter was now almost 2 ½ years old and she had a blast! We sort of worked our way around the room so she got a chance to play each game at least once. You do receive enough tickets to do some of the games more than one time.  The inside games included:
  • Throwing wooden gliders through hula hoops hung from the ceiling – my daughter needed help with this one.  It seemed easy, but proved to be challenging even for the older children of the group.  One of my favorite for its creativity!
  • Apple Toss – the children used very real looking, artificial apples and tried to toss them into the baskets.  Not as easy as it sounds. 
  • Bowling – this one was very popular and had the longest line. This was one of my daughter’s favorites–once she understood the rules.  They had a “real” alley and everything!
They also had a few games outside.  These included:
  • Bean bag Toss – Again, not an easy game, but they gave the younger children ample turns to feel successful! (And let them stand really close.)
  • Fishing “Pond” – This was another popular game with a long line.  The children stood around little water-filled inflatable pools with fishing poles and were given one minute to see how many fish they could catch.   Younger children may need help with this one.
  • Bubble Table – There was a table set up with bubbles and a variety of tools to blow/make bubbles.  Potentially messy, but fun.
All in all, the Fabulous Fun Fair was a hit with my preschooler and we are looking forward to doing it again this year.  I loved that the games were not competition based.   I also liked that the focus was doing well at the games, not on getting a prize at each game.  My daughter was very happy with the water toy fish she got to pick out with her last ticket.
A few pointers if you go this year:  
  • Stash one ticket right after you get them to make sure you have one left for your child to get a prize before you go.  They were asking for it last year.
  • Depending on which games your child likes, plan on being there for at least 20-30 minutes.  We got there a bit after it started and ended up staying almost the entire time.
  • Some lines may be long and they don’t move very fast.  Be ready to entertain your sweet blessings a bit.
  • Do the Bubble Table last due to its potential mess factor.
Maybe we’ll see you there!
Angela Pounders is a transplant to Manassas Park from Arlington.  She is blessed to be a stay at home mama to two beautiful girls.  As a former teacher (as well as preschool director and Children and Family Director), she is always on the look out for fun, easy and educational things to do with her girls.  She also loves to share her ideas and is looking to start her own blog, The Master’s Daughter, by the fall.