Swine Flu at the Kentucky State Fair?

Every year I look forward to going to the State Fair.  For one day a year, I look forward to indulging in whatever over the top greasy treats I want, allowing my son as much sugar his little heart desires, and I seek out the grilled corn booth for my single most favorite pleasure. I enjoy looking at all the baking contest entrees, although I wish I could taste them all, and each year say how the next year I will enter with a cake or a cookie, but of course I never do. Every year, my husband and I go to the fair and say the same exact thing, “it is the same as last year, but I have realized that that is just the beauty of the fair. You go to the fair for the tradition, to walk amongst your fellow Kentuckians, eat some good, bad food and take in your Kentucky pride. My husband and I could spend hours just sitting and watching  the families that come to the fair from all over the state. Living in Louisville, a metropolitan city, we often lose sight of the fact that Kentucky is a rural farming state, and the fair brings us back to our roots.

Although every year I am excited to spend a day at the fairgrounds, there has been recent news that has given me a reason to feel a little unsure about attending. Recent State fairs in Ohio and Indiana have reported cases of Swine Flu in their hogs. Apparently this Summer has been one of the worst for cases of Swine Flu in human beings as well. According to the Centers for Disease Control, in Ohio there have been 15 cases of human Swine Flu, with one related to the Ohio State Fair, and the rest with county state fairs.. In Indiana it is still unsure whether or not the pigs at the State Fair that had high temperatures were caused by Swine Flu or not, but the affected pigs were sent away from the fair. In Indiana, 11 human cases of Swine Flu were reported since July 2012 with some of those cases coming from area fairs.  

I don’t know about you, but it’s not really worth the slim risk of me or my children contracting the Swine Flu, to get a peek at a prized pig. I have to admit that the livestock section of the fair was never really my favorite part of the fair anyhow, but I worry now that being in any part of the fair might be dangerous to my children. I am normally not the type of mom that is overly concerned with sicknesses or outbreaks of the flu. When everyone was worried about the Swine Flu when we first learned about it, I understood the reality of the sickness, but was not going to wear a mask, lock up my kids, and sanitize everything I touch.   

I am nervous because I don’t know enough about the Swine Flu and how it is passed from animal to human. I’m sure someone reading this has a lot more information on this than me and can give me some insight on whether or not I am overreacting. Please help!  

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