Arts and crafty

From a photographer’s stand point, some community festivals are better than others. The upcoming Asparagus Festival in Stockton is one of the best.  From the Asparagus Alley food concessions to the asparagus eating contest to asparagus-clad mascots, there are plenty things to shoot that are related to it’s theme. Sure, there’s the generic vendors that all festivals have, but it’s relatively easy to come away with something to do with asparagus. For me, one of the hardest to shoot is the Tracy Dry Bean Festival in September. The last one I shot a few years ago featured a small display of dry beans, and that’s it. There was very little that was bean related, the rest was just an excuse for a crafts fair.

Last week I shot the Manteca Street Faire. It too was pretty much just a crafts festival covering downtown Manteca. There were the typical street vendors selling everything from sunglasses, to hand-made jewelry to tie-dyed clothing and then some. There were booths selling Super Shammys (a Shamwow knockoff).  Food vendors sold everything from the ubiquitous kettlecorn to cheese steak sandwiches. Along with all that were a variety of trinkets, knicknacks and baubles for sale (“happy crap” as a cousin who once had a store that sold such things, called them).

Having said all that, fairs such as these are very popular (Lodi has its own street fair twice a year). People throng to them looking for the latest kitchen or cleaning gizmo or for just a good deal. And they’re more honest about what they are than some of the themed fests. It’s just hard trying to find something that tells what the events are all about in just a few photos.

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