Websites;Discovery series;Discover fairs

3rd September 1999 at 01:00
All the Internet technology in the world cannot recreate the genuine fun of the fair ... but Carousel (The Carousel Organisation) at www.carousel.org is about as close as you will get. You may not get the smells, but you can certainly experience the sounds of the funfair. Listen online to the vintage 1924 band organ strains of "Doo Wacka Doo" or the "Skater's Waltz". These names may not be familiar to you, but if you've ever taken a turn on a merry-go-round, the sounds will undoubtedly bring back happy memories.

Maybe you would rather have "the fun of the fair" brought right to your doorstep. There are a number of UK-based entertainment companies which specialise in doing just that. Nationwide Funfairs amp; Promotions (www.pcuk.co.uknfpindex.html) and Premier Rides (www.netservices.co.ukfairground) are two such agencies which claim to be able to provide you with everything from bouncy castles to dodgem cars for those alternative corporate functions or weddings. Traditional funfair games and side stalls can be combined with the latest virtual reality or simulation flying.

Anyone who's ever seen a juggler tossing burning torches in the air with the greatest of ease, might be interested in All About Juggling at www.everwonder.comdavidjuggle There are links to websites which teach you the basics of juggling and there is information on what's on in the world of juggling festivals and details of Circus Arts courses around the world. If modern teaching methods don't work for you then you could download some of the video clips and simply watch great jugglers of the past.

We like to make models, be they planes, trains or automobiles. Now it seems that this desire has spread to fairground equipment. Check out All The Fun Of The Fair (The Web Site for UK Travelling Showmen and Fun Fair Fans) at www.funfair.ndirect.co.ukintro.html to find out more about fairground modelling. You can also keep yourself up to date on forthcoming events in the fairground calendar, e-mail experts with your questions on fairs, or simply get chatting online to fellow travelling showmen or funfair enthusiasts.

On a more serious note, fairground workers are continually on the move and educating their children is not an easy task as traditional schooling becomes a problem. The European Federation for the Education of the Children of Occupational Travellers (EFECOT) at www.efecot.net aims to "create and promote education adapted to the particular needs of occupational travellers". Read articles from EFECOT's publication "Newsline" about new technologies for distance learning and their latest initiatives and projects or join the online discussion in the forum.

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