Miscreants attend the Fair too
Successful and upbeat though the four-day Ag Fair was, it did not pass without incident. West Tisbury Police Chief Beth Toomey and Officer Jen Kelley reported a total of four arrests and a number of calls that required police intervention but were resolved without arrests. Within an hour after the Fair opened Thursday a shoplifter was reported taking jewelry on the local midway. Police talked with the perpetrator but made no arrest. That same evening an OUI arrest took place on Panhandle Road directly in front of the fairgrounds. Ms. Kelley said the driver was on his way to an evening at the Fair when he was stopped. Friday evening saw an arrest for disorderly conduct when a woman was apprehended for yelling and swearing in public near the stage. According to Officer Kelley she was given several chances to stop.
"She just wouldn't calm down," Ms. Kelley said.
Next came Saturday night with two men arrested after taking part in a fistfight on the front lawn near the Ferris wheel. One complaint came in that a dog was confined in a car on Sunday; the owner was quickly located and the dog freed.
Easily the most colorful incident was not reported to police at the time, although by Tuesday several rumors about the unusual occurence had reached the station from reliable sources. According to the hearsay, a man was allegedly seen one evening sitting shirtless on a bench, and at some point later he stripped off his trousers as well.
Even the days leading up to the Fair were less than placid as police were called on both Tuesday and Wednesday nights to quell disputes between carnival employees.
But, shenanigans aside, the police had a good weekend as they watched over fair crowds from a booth beside the Ag Hall. Ms. Kelley said they gave away more than 1,200 police badge stickers, many information packets and brochures, DNA kits, and candy. Free bike helmet raffles were held hourly with more than 60 helmets delivered to adults and kids. Hundreds of lost items were recovered and returned to their rightful owners and family members were reunited with lost children and at least one husband.
The First Aid booth manned by EMTs was busy too, according to Ms. Kelley, with numerous visits for minor complaints and injuries including two bee stings. Fortunately no serious injuries or conditions were seen, she said.
"It was a great Fair but we were exhausted by the end of it," laughed Chief Toomey. "We had more arrests than usual, and it was a great fair, all good family stuff. I think with larger numbers you have a better chance of things happening."