Michelle French, East Grand Forks, letter: Crafts Fair should welcome strollersHow can we improve the East Grand Forks Arts and Crafts fair? Why not start by allowing strollers?
By: Michelle French,
EAST GRAND FORKS — Was the East Grand Forks Arts and Crafts Fair on Oct. 2-3 successful? How could it be improved?
First of all, I just want to mention that I work fulltime and am a wife and a mother of a 23-month-old and a 5-month-old.
Now, how can we improve the East Grand Forks Arts and Crafts fair? Why not start by allowing strollers? Not big travel systems, but simple umbrella strollers. They take up just as much space as does one child walking.
In 2009, I had my 11-month old (at the time), and I was pregnant with my second child. I have had high-risk pregnancies in the past, so I’m not supposed to lift or carry anything for long periods of time. I found out that strollers were not allowed at the arts and crafts fair, but wheelchairs and walkers were.
So, what did I do? I borrowed a wheelchair to push my daughter in.
At the fair, I got many looks as soon as I walked in the door. A woman on the Arts and Crafts Council told me that I couldn’t have a wheelchair. But I never saw a sign banning wheelchairs and earlier had been told that they were allowed.
So, I proceeded to go in and shop. Then I was approached by another woman who told me that I should have hired a baby sitter or left the child with her father. My husband was helping an electrician wire our garage that day, and besides, I didn’t want a baby sitter. My daughter is at day care most workdays, so weekends are my time with my family.
But this woman ended up taking the wheelchair from me.
That was last year. This year, I left my 5-month-old with my husband and brought my daughter, who now is 23 months old. So, she’s now able to walk. But I also saw a mother with 17-month-old twins get told that she could not have a stroller; the mother said she was not aware of this rule. She also said that if she had known about it, she would not have came.
Many of the booths at the fair are meant for children. The booths sell items such as doll clothes, children’s furniture and toys.
Through its rules, the Arts and Crafts Council is taking sales away from those booths. Most elderly people are on a fixed income, and some young families are as well. Who does that leave to buy crafts? The answer is the younger generation.
I’m not one to complain, but this is getting ridiculous, and these things needed to be said.