Chocolate cake highlights second Taste of the Fair event
By Steven Hoffman
On Saturday, Sept. 12, the second of the Taste of the Fair events attracted scores of community members, fancy bakers, and classic car collectors. The event in Unionville had a theme of “Classic Chocolate,” and a judged chocolate contest was a highlight.
The Taste of the Fair events were planned after it became apparent that the regular Unionville Community Fair could not go on as scheduled because of the restrictions that are in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
Jayne Shea and Bonnie Musser, two women who have chaired the Unionville Community Fair, came up with the idea of organizing three smaller events, called Taste of the Fair, to be presented in August, September and October on the grounds of the Foxy Loxy Ice Cream Parlour and Coffee Shoppe. in Unionville.
At the Sept. 12 event, Charlie Brosius returned with the calliope he has reconditioned. Many of the car enthusiasts who had taken part in the August event drove in again with their prized vehicles.
This month, however, the star of the show was the chocolate cake judging, which has long been a popular attraction during the 94-year history of the fair.
Three judges – Patrick Ruddy, Deb Rollins and Tina Brown —met in the Foxy Loxy parlor under the leadership of Terry Hawkins to taste and comment on twelve entries in the contest. These cakes weren’t humble bakery goods offered in quantity at the local grocery store. They were elegant and beautiful, exhibiting the skill and work their creators had put into them.
In the end, the winning cake with multiple layers and topped with a circle of rosettes came from Emily Cwyk of Chadds Ford. She called it “Modernizing Mom Mom’s Chocolate Cake.” Second place went to Addison Twesten.
“It was a tough competition with lots of good cakes,” Hawkins said.
Adding to the entertainment throughout the day was music from vinyl records provided by retired Unionville-Chadds Ford School District administrator Tom Marinelli. He brought a few of his 30 crates of old records and covers which he said he’s been accumulating since his youth.
“I never threw any records away,” he said.
He was available during his visit for requests of music dating back to the 1950s. Currently, he and his wife, Karen, professionally provide “random acts of music” for parties and other events.
Bill Combs, Unionville High School Class of 1963, was on hand to continue his horseshoe tournament and lessons, which he intends to offer again at the third installment of the Taste of the Fair events. Combs has competed at the national level in the sport, and said he is disappointed that interest in it has waned as the years have gone by.
Over at the auto repair car garage and parking lot of Lou Mandich, several dozen owners of classic cars and jeeps brought them in for display.
Included in the group was State Rep. John Lawrence, a resident of Franklin Township, who brought over his newly acquired 1969 mail delivery Keyser truck.
Several other owners showed off the interiors of their classic cars and explained the upgrades they had provided.
Visitor Jeannine Gingras brought along her granddaughter Aubrey Davidson, who was wearing a yellow, storybook fairy princess dress her grandma said she had picked up at a Disney store. Aubrey was introduced to the sport of cornhole pitching by 2019 Unionville Community Fair Princess Alternate Tomasina Petragnani.
Vendors returned as well, including booths for honey, chocolate, soap and decorative signs. Abram Broughton brought an elaborate display of honey with varieties that ranged from totally raw to thin sticks to sweeten tea.
The attendance didn’t abate throughout the day, with visitors, including many local high school students, sticking around to order ice cream and snacks from Foxy Loxy. A substantial number of the adults, including Musser, gathered at tables to survey the scene and talk about the fair.
The third installment of “Taste of the Fair” will be held on Oct. 10 at the Foxy Loxy property with an apple and pumpkin theme. Children are invited to come in costumes on that day.