Sunday, September 30, 2012

Review: Wollybear Festival 2012

I’ve been working on some comic and sculpture projects over the last week, but I haven’t gotten anything finished enough to talk about here.  I even took a day off away from the drawing board today.  I went to the 40th annual Wollybear Festival in Vermillion, Ohio today.  The Wollybear Festival is held every fall, sponsored by Fox 8 Cleveland and hosted by meteorologist and animal lover extraordinaire Dick Goddard, a local legend.  It is Ohio’s biggest one-day festival.  I don’t know the exact numbers, of course, but I’d estimate about 8 million or so people were in the small town of Vermillion today.
Dick Goddard onstage at the Wollybear Festival

If you didn’t know, a wollybear is a brown and orange caterpillar.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen a wollybear when I wasn’t at the festival, but I’ve learned a few things from hearing about them at the festival and on Fox 8 News over the years.  For example, there is a legend that the width of the wollybear’s stripes predicts how severe the winter will be.  I don’t remember exactly the details, but I figure it doesn’t matter.  Winter is always severe around here.  (Except last year, of course.)  I also think the wollybear caterpillar eventually turns into a wollybear cocoon and then a wollybear butterfly.  But the butterfly waits to come out after Ohio’s harsh winter, of course.  The festival features a wollybear race, so they must be fast I’d guess.  There’s also a costume contest where people and animals try to look like wollybears.

Like all festivals, there are crafts and live entertainment at wollybear.  The highlight for me, though, is the food.  You know, that great fried-everything fair food?  Yeah!  Great stuff!!  Though I didn’t have the fried stuff this year, but rather some spicy grilled chicken with rice and beans.  Excellent!!  I had an apple dumpling with ice cream for dessert.  Also excellent!!  I also bought some T-shirts and donated some money to animal causes.  To get a little serious here, the festival does a wonderful job promoting pro-animal causes and I encourage everyone to donate something at the festival or to a local cause.  There’s no reason for people to treat animals inhumanely.
Now I’m back to the drawing board.  Maybe I’ll sketch a wollybear

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