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Photos: 49th Oregon Country Fair offers a whimsical weekend between the trees



Giant, mysterious beings decorated with plant imagery wandered down the paths, dancing to music and even running into trees. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

The main entrance of the 49th annual Oregon Country Fair is where tens to thousands attendees from multiple states can immerse themselves in a hippie experience. For most, the Oregon Country Fair is a summer and family tradition. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

A young girl periodically stretches her wings in excitement as her friends, hidden in front of her, play a game. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

A man performs difficult feats of strength as his friends play a tune behind him. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

A man plays the didgeridoo in a drum circle as people wander in and out to the sounds. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

A man jumps over a set of seven people chosen randomly from the audience. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Fair attendees quietly watch as a man balances and transfers a soft, polished plastic ball from one hand to the other. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

Moving with different fair-goers, the two costumed people in the center and right, stop to flirt in a French accent and tickle. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Throughout the fair, people talked about personal and professional experiences, ranging from politics to spirituality. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Above many of the stalls were hangouts with limited access. On the left, a man aims an air gun at the passersby below. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

A woman dances with her hula hoop in the mist during one of the many performances. The weather was reportedly in the mid-90s. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

A group of fair attendees sport head costumes on a day where the peak temperature reached 94 degrees. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

Two people press their palms together before bowing and saying, “Namaste,” after dancing together. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Everywhere you look, people in attendance were making more ways to enjoy more than what was officially planned by embracing the open nature of the fair. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

The fair is home to nudity and lavish costumes alike. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Much of the costumes at the fair were whimsical and forest fantasy-driven. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Since the fair opener in 1969, the Oregon Country Fair tradition of no dress code and a diverse array of entertainment has fostered an immersive experience reflective of an hippiesque era in the U.S. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

Body paint is a popular way to decorate oneself at the fair, but this couple used it to show off a baby bump. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Open spaces in the fair offer not just a place to rest, but to also entertain. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

The craft corner in the fair housed activities like basket weaving and fire starting. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Since the fair opener in 1969, the Oregon Country Fair tradition of no dress code and a diverse array of entertainment has fostered an immersive experience reflective of an hippiesque era in the U.S. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

Do you suppose she’s a wildflower?: The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Make yourself at om: The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Close to the entrance is a space for meditation despite heavy traffic parading by. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Mckenna Rayburn stops to try on hats, only to find a small pile where people are told to give and take what they’d like. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

 

The University of Oregon Physics Department booth, Science of Energy, brought small physics demonstrations and interaction. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Maracas shake in rhythm with the bodies dancing in a drum circle. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

People clammered on top of the drum tower to dance to the sounds of a huge drum circle below. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

People dance in the sun and mist during the second day of the fair. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Since the fair opener in 1969, the Oregon Country Fair tradition of no dress code and a diverse array of entertainment has fostered an immersive experience reflective of an hippiesque era in the U.S. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

All Star Opera performs at the 49th annual Oregon Country Fair on Saturday July 14th, 2018. (Austin Willhoft/Emerald)

 

LTD provides a free bus shuttle to and from the fair from Eugene. The 49th annual Oregon Country Fair proved to be a surprisingly vast network woven into the forest, creating a dreamy home for family and friends to indulge in Eugene’s hippie roots for a weekend. (Dana Sparks/Emerald)

 

Follow Dana Sparks on Instagram: @danasparksphoto

Follow Austin Willhoft on Twitter: @_awilly_

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Dana Sparks

Dana Sparks

Dana is a photojournalist specializing in long-format, feature stories and portraiture. She dabbles in writing and video production.

Catch her on instagram @danasparksphoto