The Indiana State Fair Tragedy

In a little while (maybe tomorrow), I’m going to have a post about the food at the Indiana State Fair. It’s a fun thing my family and I do every year, and a number of you have already written me asking me about this year’s post.

We were planning to go last Sunday morning, but unfortunately, last Saturday night, there was a horrible accident. Fans were waiting for Sugarland to come on stage after Sara Bareilles had finished performing. All of a sudden, the weather took a turn for the worse. From what I’ve read, they were just beginning to move those in attendance from the fairground grandstand to a nearby coliseum when a the wind became severe and collapsed the stage and rigging onto a mass of people. I will caution you that the video footage is somewhat frightening, but it can be found here.

At least six people are already dead. From what I’ve heard around the hospitals, that number is likely to grow higher still. Many, many more were terribly injured.

Words fail. It’s simply horrible. And yet, sometimes when things are darkest, it’s easier to see how brightly others can shine. I personally know a number of doctors who, although not working last Saturday night, immediately went into the emergency departments to see if they could help. I’m sure they made a difference. I’ve also heard about fans who rushed toward the accident, not away, to see what they could do for victims. Some remarkable pictures of their heroics can be seen here.

The fair opened again on Monday morning after closing on Sunday. For many, the state fair is a major source of income, and it’s important to the State’s economy as well. Moreover, it seems very Midwestern to carry on even in the face of adversity. I know I give my adopted state a lot of grief sometimes, but it’s times like this I’m secretly proud to be a Hoosier.

So we still packed up the kids this weekend and made our annual trip down to the state fair to support those who make it possible, and to absolutely eat ourselves sick. I’m going to post, and I’m going to try and make you laugh, but it just didn’t seem right to do so without first acknowledging what occurred. My heart goes out to all those affected by last week’s accident.

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