One of the highlights of my social season (such as it is) is the Northern Alliance Radio Network’s broadcasts from the MN State Fair. We always do two Saturdays (in and among a few weeknights here and there), and it’s always a blast.
And this year, I have a camera (sorta)!
Walking onto the fairgrounds this year (Dan Patch just west of Cosgrove), there was a new addition – O’Gara’s has built a big honkin’ Irish pub next door to our lot!
Complete with bagpiper!
Nothing for great radio like bagpipes in the background! You can take mah acoustic isolation, but ye canna take mah freedom!
When I get there, Hugh Hewitt was relaxing, getting ready to go on the air with John Hinderaker and Brian Ward:
They chatted politics for a bit…
…although for the most part they just bagged on Hugh’s producer, Duane “Generalissimo” Patterson…
Who had, for the first time in the 153 year history of the MN State Fair, killed a sheep in a shearing contest.
In the meantime, Brian “Saint Paul” Ward got things organized for the highlight of every single years’ NARN1 broadcast – the Scotch Egg eating contest. Of which more later.
Ed Morrissey showed impeccably bad timing by arriving just as Brian was looking for the mandatory fifth contestant to make the quorum required by the International Scotch Egg Sports Federation.
(Me? I begged off claiming illness. I wasn’t lying; I would have gotten sick if I’d had to bolt down a Scotch Egg. It woulda sat in my stomach for the next two hours in the sun like a remorseless lurking assassin).
Not afraid of getting sick was Atomizer, one-time co-host of the NARN (no, literally; one time. He sat in for the first segment of our first show, back in 2004. And never again) and coblogger at Fraters Libertas, whose stomach and liver make Shane McGowan look like Mother Theresa.
Finally, Saint got a quorum together – Duane, Ed and three other contestants:
Brian had a quick chat with Lindsey, who’s represented the Scotch Egg vendor for seven straight competitions now…
…and, finally, launched the big event:
After a hard-fought battle at near-record speed, we had a winner!
The NARN1 guys wrapped up after that, as I wandered about. I got to chat with Kate…
…the person who actually makes the NARN broadcasts at the fair work, and of course the folks in the Merch booth…:
…who make it profitable!
And then it was the top of the hour, and NARN2’s turn. John and Brian left, and I set up on the “Dave’s Floor Sanding Broadcast Deck”.
We interviewed Pat Anderson…:
…and Tom Emmer…:
They both drew a crowd…:
More next week. And maybe a tour of the fair itself…