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home : columnists : columnists August 21, 2017


7/20/2017 4:00:00 AM
Finding my 4-H Fair chair
The Times photo by Eddie SchwartzBetsy Reason of The Times finally found her gray, padded folding chair with the help of 4-H Fairgrounds employees Bernie Huber, Eddie Schwartz,(who snapped this photo), and other employees.
The Times photo by Eddie Schwartz

Betsy Reason of The Times finally found her gray, padded folding chair with the help of 4-H Fairgrounds employees Bernie Huber, Eddie Schwartz,(who snapped this photo), and other employees.

By Betsy Reason
Editor


It was the first year that I came to The Noblesville Times. And I was told that the newspaper would be renting a booth in the Commercial Tent at the Hamilton County 4-H Fair.

As a booth holder, we got an assigned space in the tent. We brought our own table, chairs, box fan, plus subscription sign-up sheets and daily copies of The Times. And a bowl of candy to entice fairgoers.

I brought my nice gray, folding chairs with padded seats and padded backs. Times employees, including our advertising staff, reporters and our summer intern and I sat in the chairs.

While we often stood at the booth, when the tent was busy with fairgoers, we used the chairs to sit at a card table that I brought so the reporters, intern and I could write our stories at the 4-H Fair.

We used my gray, padded folding chairs the entire five days of the Fair.

When it was time to pack up after the Fair, I returned to the tent, and one of my gray, padded folding chairs was missing.

Ugh. Where did it go? Where was my gray, padded folding chair?

I looked around inside the tent, at every booth. Maybe somebody had borrowed my gray, padded folding chair and was using the chair when we weren't at our booth? Maybe a fellow tent vendor had mistakenly packed up my gray, padded folding chair and took it home with them or back to their office?

Where was my gray, padded folding chair?

Our then general manager learned I was missing a chair and brought one back to the office. But it wasn't my gray, padded folding chair, so he returned it to the Fairgrounds.

Now, I was on a mission to find my gray, padded folding chair. It's part of a set of six chairs, so I didn't want to lose the chair.

So, I took a photo of one of the other chairs in the set, back and front. The underside of the chair has my name "Reason" written in black Sharpie. So it was obvious to anyone that it belongs to someone else.

I sent a photo of my gray, padded folding chair to the 4-H Fair office employee Bernie Huber, who sent out the "Missing chair" memo with photos and description to all of the vendors, to see if they had mistakenly picked up my chair and took it with them.

Still, no chair. Vendors responded. No one had my gray, padded folding chair.

Ugh. Where did it go? Where was my gray, padded folding chair?

Every time I went to the Fairgrounds for any event, for 4-H clogging lessons, or Master Gardeners events, I would be looking for my gray, padded folding chair.

You see, the 4-H Fairgrounds chairs were just like mine, except my gray, padded folding chair has a padded seat and padded back, unlike the Fairgrounds chairs' which have only a padded seat. So my gray, padded folding chair could have easily gotten mixed in with their chairs.

I asked Bernie again and again if anyone ever found my gray, padded folding chair. It got to be kind of a joke whenever I would talk to Bernie.

A year passed, and it was time for the 2015 Fair to open and to set up our Times newspaper booth at the Fair.

And I was again thinking about my gray, padded folding chair.

Where did it go? Where was my gray, padded folding chair?

I decided to again send the photos with description of the gray, padded folding chair to Bernie at the 4-H Fairgrounds. She was probably rolling her eyes when she got the email. But she printed out the message with the photo and posted it around the 4-H Fair Office, with the headline "Chair Missing."

Then, the 4-H Fair was here and the Fairgrounds was bustling with activity. I was covering events, taking photos and eating Fair food.

I was actually in the Exhibition Center when, all of a sudden, my iPhone rang, and it was Bernie from the 4-H Fair office. They had found my gray, padded foldling chair with my name on it.

I was only steps from the Fair Office, and I quickly made my way to be reunited with my gray, padded folding chair.

I laughed, almost cried with joy, as I saw my gray, padded folding chair sitting there waiting for me. Our reporter and interns and my daughter was with me, and we all laughed again and again about finding my gray, padded folding chair.

Apparently, Fair employees were unfolding chairs for the Fair in the Exhibition Center, and found a chair that was a little more comfortable than the rest. Employees had apparently thought the chair belonged to the Fairgrounds and packed it up a year earlier with the rest.

So, now you know the story of my gray, padded folding chair.

-Contact me at betsy@thetimes24-7.com. This year's Hamilton County 4-H Fair opens today and continues through Monday, with the livestock auction on Tuesday, at the Hamilton County 4-H Fairgrounds in Noblesville.







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