Families come together at Lincoln Fair

July 08, 2004|EMILY BURTON

STANFORD - Don't put that in your mouth. Quit hitting your brother. Do that one more time and we're going home.

Fair season goes with family time like station wagons and 'Don't make me come back there.' Family traditions sparked a different side of parenting at the Lincoln County Fair Wednesday. Less 'Eat your vegetables' and more 'Gentleman, start your engines.'

The Stull family has participated in demolition derbies for 10 years, stemming from a friend's dare a decade ago. Father and son Paul Jr. and Tim Stull of Waynesburg both entered cars in the derby's mini division for a second year.

"We spend a lot of time building them and only a little time tearing them up," said Paul.

They were looking forward to competing against one another in the final heat but a broken strut kept Tim out at the last minute.


"I knew it was going to break, but I thought I could go out and hit some, do a little damage," Tim said from the sideline as his dad drove into the ring.

He was probably lucky. Paul dogged his opponents through the red clay and beat them into submission for the win that night.

Before the match, Tim had been ready to take that trophy.

"When it comes down to us, I'll try hardest to put him out. Cause I want the money as much as he does," he said of the $500 prize.

"He already does better than I did when I first started," said Paul. "It took me 10 years to get like I can drive now."

"After the first hit, you're use to it," explained Tim.

Muscle cars are not the only ties that bind father, son and county fair.

Hairspray provides an edge at arm wrestling matches

For some, all it took was sticky hands. Father and son Dennis and Josh Ray of Casey County shared a can of hairspray Wednesday before their arm wrestling matches.

"Cause it makes [your hands] sticky, you get a better grip," said Josh. He started competing because "it runs in the family."

Dad Dennis was a professional arm wrestler for about 30 years and was twice named world champion, he says. His is now planning to return to the professional circuit.

Dennis also started his career on a dare. He entered an arm wrestling contest at a shopping mall, won it, and never looked back.

"Everybody has something they're good at, and this is just something I'm good at," said Dennis.

His son has also studied the sport's finer nuances, psyching himself up with short deep breaths while throwing moves like the hammer and the top roll.

"It's 80 percent technique," explained Josh. "Technique will beat out power 90 percent of the time."

And despite their duel losses that night, both Josh and Tim said they were ready to come back next year. It was, after all their turn to hold the trophies.

"One of these days..." said Tim.

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