Robin Rosemond/Turnagain Times
Pho Julia & Thai Cuisine on Arctic Blvd. has the best lunch special.
By Robin Rosemond
Turnagain Times Correspondent
The Alaska State Fair is here and it’s celebrating 75 Years! In 1935, the U.S. government made an effort to populate the Matanuska Valley by establishing a farming colony with the intent of opening up Alaska, providing food to the military in case of war and giving families on relief a new start. A total of 203 families were selected and they arrived in the Valley in May 1935. By July 1936, they were ready for a celebration. The Matanuska Valley Fair Association was formed and they decided to hold a four-day Fair from September 4 through Sept. 7.
The Fair had events, which included the crowning of the Fair Queen, a baby show, boxing matches, horse races, dances, a rodeo and baseball games. There were also hundreds of agricultural entries, including giant cabbages, grain, carrots, onions, celery, peas and other vegetables.
The giant cabbage contest tradition officially began in 1941 when the manager of the Alaska Railroad offered a $25 prize for the largest cabbage. Max Sherrod of the Valley took the prize with a 23 pounder. In 2009, Wasilla farmer Steve Hubacek set a new record for the world’s heaviest cabbage with his 127-pound entry into the Giant Cabbage Weigh-Off. Other notable giant vegetables include 2010’s pending world record-breaking 46-foot, 8-inch gourd vine, and the state record-breaking 39-inch bean, 83-inch gourd and 1,101-pound pumpkin.
The following are some of the entertainment highlights of this years Fair you won’t want to miss: The 2011 AT&T Concert Series presents: Aug. 25 – Queensryche, Aug. 26 – Chevelle, Aug. 27 – Craig Morgan, Aug. 28 – Garrison Keillor, Aug. 29 – Fog Hat, Aug. 30 – Charlie Daniels Band, Aug. 31 – Rat Pack Revue, Sept. 1 - Uncle Kracker, Sept. 2 – Staind, Sept. 3 – Gabriel Iglesias, Sept. 4 – One Republic, Sept. 5 – Colbie Caillat.
Lucero will be performing Aug. 19 & 20 at the Alyeska Resort in Girdwood. They are a popular Southern Rock band that is part of the Memphis scene. “Lucero live to rock and rock to live. No more. No less. It’s really that simple.” For more information call: 754-2275.
The Greek Festival returns at the Holy Transfiguration Orthodox Church on O’Malley Aug. 19 – 21. The church is still not completed, but they do know how to have a party! For more information call: 344-0190.
Hawaiian Day is August 20th on 4th & E Street. Check out the food, music and fun! Wear a Hawaiian shirt and immerse yourself in island magic! For more information: 279-5650.
Humpy’s Rocking The Lot is Aug. 20. This sounds like a good time and it’s free! Entertainment provided by Lavoy and Turquoise Boy. Humpy’s Great Alaskan Ale House, 610 West 6th. For more information: 276-2337.
My restaurant pick of the week is Pho Julia & Thai Cuisine. This location on Arctic has had several incarnations, but this one looks promising. The food is delicious and reasonably priced. I enjoyed the lunch special for $9.95, which included soup and salad, an entree with rice and a delicious salad roll. The red curry was a good choice and the Thai Ice Tea was the perfect summer refreshment. Give them a try! Arctic Pho Julia & Thai Cuisine 5011 Arctic Boulevard. Form more information call: 277-8777,
Write to me: email@example.com or check out my blog: www.rosemondpost.com.