By Ryan Bergman, contributing writer
The huddled crowd watched on as Phyllis Ray made a last ditch effort for victory. One false move and everything she had worked hard for would be gone. Spectators gasped as her tower started to tumble, just before the time limit expired. Then she ate the wreckage and washed it down with some milk.
The Senior Oreo Stacking competition was one of the highlights on the opening day of the Oswego County Fair on Thursday, with 15 senior citizens entering the competition, which was sponsored by Blue Cross/Blue Shield.
The winner of the competition was Ray, 81, who stacked 21 Oreo cookies in a tower in 3 minutes. Second place was taken by 56-year-old Rhonda Clark coming up one cookie short at 20. A distant third was Betty Newlen, 67. The three ladies had to go through a round of qualifiers before a match-up in a three woman stack-off.
Anne Gibbs, Secretary of the Oswego County Fair, presented Mrs. Ray with a plaque and the prized blue ribbon as the winner of the competition. “The idea behind Senior Day used to be that seniors got in free,” said Gibbs.
“But now that we don’t charge admission, we needed to give the seniors something to make the day seem special.”
Special events for the seniors included the stacking contest, a spelling bee, and a performance by the Black River Fiddlers.
Gibbs concluded by saying, “I guess the real reason I’m happy we do these things is that it keeps me young.”
Other events during day one of the Oswego County Fair included harness racing at the Grandstand, various displays and exhibits throughout the grounds, and traditional midway games and rides.
The fair runs through Monday July 4. Admission and parking is free. Charges may be applied for events at the Grandstand held throughout the run of the fair.