On and Off The Mountain/Stephanie Grubert

The summer picnic-bazaar-carnival season is coming to a grand finale this weekend with St. Jude’s Picnic Friday through Sunday, August 8, 9 and 10. Our family has made it to several events so far this summer. Each has a unique character, delicious food, and a variety of entertainment. The St. Jude’s event has been held for about 60 years. When you get past 50 the time piles up faster.

Our family enjoyed the Hobbie Carnival last weekend. We wanted to experience the tractor pull event, which head organizer Diana Bloss had described to me as going on until midnight. Charlie and I arrived shortly after 3 p. m. Saturday afternoon and we got some great front row seating to enjoy the event. We stayed until 8 p. m. with breaks for food and a turn around the game booths.

Luckily the man I sat next to was a neighbor that I had not met before and he was a wealth of information about the mechanics of the tractor pulling. I expected the tractors to be large machines, but the Hobbie pull featured much smaller machines about the size of our 25-year-old green John Deere. Indeed there

TRACTOR PULL –The Hobbie Carnival featured a Tractor Pull, which was held from 3 p. m. to 11 p. m.

were several machines that sported the John Deere logo, but they were not as strong as the Cub Cadets, Simplicitys and souped up personal tractors.

The goal of the pull is to pull a sled carrying weight, which varies by class and length of the track, until the wheels dig in and the lap is finished. We saw machines pull anywhere from 60 feet to 185 feet. The action is repetitive but it is fun to watch too. You get to know the different drivers and some tractors compete in various classes.

We met Richard and Gloria Wyda from Wyda’s Small Engines in Hobbie and they said they had brought the original tractor pull event to the carnival many years ago. We happen to have our John Deere serviced by the Wydas, so the event had some personal significance for us. Gloria said her family competed years ago, when their children were young, but now they just stop by and enjoy a pull at the various fairs and events during the summer.

The other outstanding enjoyment at the Hobbie Carnival is the ice cream. I had the most delicious rich chocolate ice cream cone in many years Saturday night. There were at least 12 flavors to choose from and an energetic army of servers to take care of customer orders pronto.

As we drove home from the Hobbie Carnival we once again declared that it was number one for it’s unique offerings. I hope the event was once again a financial success. Judging from the attendance I know it was.

Wildlife Sitings

The wildlife is very inquisitive this year, especially in our more rural area of Mountaintop. The children counted 18 deer sightings on the ride home from Hobbie to Wilderness Estates Saturday night. Sunday morning we saw a fawn resting on a leaf pile in our woods. The doe was sure to be nearby.

Unfortunately for me the deer tore down a corner of the six-foot high “deer fence” that encloses my vegetable garden and ate all the foliage off the mature bean plants last week. The deer also ate the beets including the tops and roots and enjoyed some carrots too. So far they haven’t touched the lettuce, celery, or tomatoes. I know they like Brussel sprouts and broccoli.

The fence is back up, but you never know when a marauder will drop by. I had picked several large bags of beans within the past 10 days, which are now blanched and in my freezer so all is not lost. Competing with nature whether it is weather, wildlife, blight, beetles, and birds is the farmer’s challenge.

We got our first sweet tomatoes this week. The large cherries gave us our first taste and then we moved on to the standard tomatoes on the larger bushes. The squash has been prolific and I have been putting extra squash out on a bench by the road for anybody passing to take and enjoy. In years when my harvest was lacking other gardeners always gave me some of theirs.

Round the Clock Mountaintop’s newest restaurant,

Leaf & Ladle, continues to enjoy steady customers eager to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner. Leaf & Ladle is open from 8 a. m. to 8 p. m., a challenging schedule for a new business. It’s nice to have dining choices in Mountaintop.

Fairview Township Police have investigated four burglaries or attempted burglaries of small businesses in the past 10 days. I first learned about the problem on Facebook. News gatherers around the world have social media on their radar for clues as to what is happening in their cities and towns. Mountaintop Eagle has a webpage and occasionally we will post Facebook updates if we learn of something newsworthy before our next print edition. Keep us on your radar and when you need information be sure to call us at 570-474-NEWS (6397).

There’s still time to catch the Nuangola Theatre at the Grove’s performance of “Hair” the American tribal rock musical this weekend on Friday and Saturday August 8 and 9 at 8 p. m. and Sunday August 10 at 3 p. m. I grew up in the “Hair” era although as my children often remind me “Mom, you missed the 60’s”. I was not living a bohemian lifestyle and I was not politically active fighting against conscription of young men into the Vietnam War. The music is beautiful including Aquarius and Good Morning Starshine and the Grove production has a 6-piece rock band. Tickets are $15 to $20 and can be reserved by calling 570-868-8212 or by emailing GroveTickets@frontier.com.