Mountain Fair stays mellow as crowds grow
Post Independent Staff Writers
CARBONDALE — Longtime locals were in abundance for Carbondale’s Mountain Fair throughout the three-day event, as they adapted to the big party’s growing popularity and outside visitors.
Steve Guhko, a resident of Glenwood, has been to every Mountain Fair in the last 44 years except for two.
“It’s different to not know all the people,” Guhko said. “It’s always been loads of fun.”
He recalled the first one when he still worked in the mining industry. He said there were “hippies smoking pot,” and lots of music and fun.
“It’s come a long, long ways,” Guhko said.
He was with Pat Vannest, a resident of Delta, attending her first Mountain Fair.
“I’m very impressed with all the vendors,” Vannest said.
She loved one of the vendors, Boxed-In, specifically because they did “beautiful woodworking.”
Both planned to check out the men’s wood-splitting later in the afternoon.
Kathy Grice and John Sorensen of Carbondale wore their biking gear as they stood in line for barbecue food.
“It’s growing every year,” Sorensen said.
Grice said her favorite thing about the fair is “probably the food.”
“You can pick up some unique things,” Grice said.
Sorensen said he prefers the craft booths because, “I just like looking at it.”
Troy Kampe was resting under the tent taking a break from the heat with his son, Quinn, 8.
“It’s been amazing,” Kampe said. “It’s a nice turn-out, but it’s not ‘jammy.’”
From Carbondale, this was Kampe’s third time attending the three-day event. He noted the good weather, the laid-back atmosphere and how family friendly it is.
They hadn’t had a chance to see any of the events or competitions yet, but they, too, mentioned perhaps checking out wood-splitting.
Matt Jones, of Basalt, was there with his two children, Bennett, 10, and William, 9.
“I love it here; it’s very good,” Bennett said.
They rode their bikes to the fair and Jones said “they would try” to ride them back — though Basalt is uphill.
“We have a bunch of friends; we couldn’t find ‘em,” Jones said. “That means it’s a good party.”
As for any disruptions during the fair, Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling, said it was a pretty slow weekend.
“Usually we have more disagreements between groups we have to break up, but this year, not really,” Schilling said.
The town had two drunken driving arrests and a few noise complaints, he said.
“We had a couple lost kids that came to the trailer, and we found their parents pretty soon,” Schilling said.
The crowds were bigger on Friday and Saturday and had kind of tapered off by Sunday, he said.
“Overall, a good weekend,” Schilling said.
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