Oregon is a state in the U.S.A. known for it's agricultural diversity, and many small towns identity with their local crops. There is a rich tradition of crop festivals that celebrate this abundance, whether the crops are a current source of income, or a nostalgic memory of life prior to urbanization. During the summer and autumn you can find a small town fruit or veggie festival just about every weekend. In addition to celebrating abundance in terms of "the harvest", these festivals celebrate the abundance of family, community, and friendship. They are open air stages where folks connect , where people come out of their homes to enjoy classic American events such as parades, eating contests, library book sales, food booths and concerts.
For the last several years I have been photographing small town crop festivals throughout Oregon. These images offer a taste of classic "Americana" as neighbors gather to uphold local traditions, to enjoy each other's company, and to foster a sense of pride and identity. As a photographer, these festivals are a pleasure ... so many people, special events, interactions ... in every direction, all day long. I like the challenge of trying to capture and distill the spirit of each festival into a triptych photo-essay.
"Oregon Crop Festivals" is a work in progress, since there are many Oregon festivals that I still haven't documented ... yet.
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