Good morning, Netizens…
At first she didn’t want me to take her picture, but then relented when I promised her I would not mention her name. Even then, in the mannerisms of my generation, she was shy about her accomplishment, having risen early that morning, arriving at the Rockford Fair about 9:00 o’clock and volunteering all day in the kitchens helping prepare food. All this incredible effort at the age of 60-something.
“I wonder where the next generation of volunteers are going to come from?” she asked me plaintively. “Everything you see here at the fair, from the displays to the food we serve, is all handled by volunteers, and we’re frankly running out of people.”
It was not the first time I had heard that comment, and as the afternoon waned, the wind increasing and beginning to sprinkle fair patrons with occasional rain drops, through the eyes of this unsung volunteer at the fair, I saw other volunteers checking and tightening the cinches on the various tent poles, and the fair manager scurrying around the fairgrounds making certain everything was ready, whatever the weather might have brought.
“You just tell everyone if they enjoyed the Rockford Fair this year, next year they need to come out and volunteer, hear? It’s always nicer when we have lots of volunteers.”