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Going to the fair once meant an abundance of cotton candy, corn dogs, candy apples along with some fries, elephant ears, lemonade and root beer floats. Times have definitely changed because now when you visit the fair, your probably going to find your food on a stick, and deep fried if you want something exotic . . . and not so kind to your body. We are a long way from the deep fried Twinkies, Oreos and Spam. Have a look without drooling (or otherwise). Maybe you might want to carry some anti-acid along just in case.

As for myself, I think I’m going to have to (1) Skip the fair, (2) Eat before I go or find something a little more healthy there, or (3) Have one heck of a last meal. Here are some highlights:


Alabama (Birmingham): Krispy Kreme Hamburgers
The doughnut burger at the Alabama State Fair is a quarter-pound hamburger, bacon, cheese and two glazed Krispy Kreme doughnuts in place of a single bun; containing nearly 1,100 calories and 67 grams of fat.  Photo © Bob B. Brown

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California (Costa Mesa):  Deep-Fried White Castle Burgers
The Orange County Fair is so dedicated to frying that a vendor called Heart Attack Café chose Deep Fried Butter Stand as its new name after being pressured with legal action by Arizona's Heart Attack Grill. Even more stupendous: Chicken Charlie's fried White Castle cheeseburgers (bun and all).  Photo © JoAnn Maxwell Stougaard
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Florida (Tampa):  Cheeseburger with Fried Ice Cream
One Florida State Fairgoer rationalized the appeal of a cheeseburger topped with deep-fried ice cream by describing the salty-sweet hybrid as a "milk-shake burger".  Photo © Dennis and Cheryl Reas
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Indiana (Indianapolis):  Hot Beef Sundae
When state fairgoers tired of the iconic rib eye steak sandwich, Indiana's Beef Cattle Association invented the Hot Beef Sundae ~ layered with mashed potatoes, marinated beef, gravy, cheese, corn "sprinkles" and a cherry (tomato).  Photo © Tom Coates
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Massachusetts (West Springfield):  Fried Jelly Beans
The Big E (a nickname for the Massachusetts State Fair) doesn't force a choice between candy and funnel cake. These jelly beans are dipped in batter before being deep-fried.  Photo © Melissa Rebelo
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Montana (Great Falls):  Fried Butter Balls
While the Montana State Fair is famous for its Big Sky ProRodeo Roundup, fried-food enthusiasts head for the deep-fried butter balls. Photo © Heather Leah Kennedy
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North Carolina (Raleigh):  Kool-Aid Pickles
Also known as Koolickles, pickles soaked in the sugary beverage are a Southern tradition and a sweet-and-sour snack at North Carolina's annual state fair.  Photo © deep fried kudzu
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Ohio (Columbus):  Chocolate-Covered Bacon on a Stick
Known as "A Muddy Pig".  Chocolate-covered bacon on a stick isn't new to fairgrounds, but the Ohio State Fair gilds the salty-sweet construction with a candied cherry.  Photo © A. Bill Miller
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South Carolina (Columbia):  Fried Pepsi
Pepsi was created in North Carolina, but it's hardly recognizable in South Carolina, where state fair vendors inject fried dough with Pepsi syrup and top the result with powdered sugar and more syrup.  Photo © Sean Mellody
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Texas (Dallas):  Fried Beer
Even alcohol can be fried when it's pocketed in pretzel dough. The food innovation won the 2010 Big Tex Choice Awards at the Texas State Fair.  Photo © Amanda Gillispie
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As the temperatures soar, we long for the days of lounging poolside with endless possibilities of pampering. Take a dip into some of the worlds most extraordinary pools that gives a new meaning to ultimate luxury and puts the kiddie pool to shame . . . In fact I think I’m turning ours into the doggie pool after these magical marvels!

The swimming pool view at the Banyan Tree Hotel and Spa in Seychelles http://www.banyantree.com/en/seychelles/overview is nestled in Intendance Bay with spectacular views overlooking the Indian Ocean with a raised-level infinity structure complete with a narrow point jutting out above the beach. The pool looks like it's floating on the sea, with palms drooping over its sides and waves crashing on huge granite boulders below it. Banyan Tree Seychelles offers 60 villas with each having at least one private pool with an ocean view. They have recently complete Double Pool Villas which offer two pools each.
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For the worlds most expensive swimming pool you need to visit the twenty acre pool that is long as three football fields, holds 66 million gallons of saltwater and it’s deep end is 115 feet deep in Chile at the San Alfonso Del Mar Resort http://www.sanalfonso.cl/ingles/main.html. This rates as the worlds most expensive swimming pool for it cost nearly $2 billion to build and requires almost $4 million in annual maintenance.
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In Sydney, Australia, The Icebergs http://icebergs.com.au/ swimming pool is located in the famed Bondi Beach where the ocean’s waves will often break over the side of the pool. The pool is open to the public at small admittance fee.
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The infinity pool at Ali Ubud http://www.alilahotels.com/Ubud/ in Bali boasts a spectacular location perched on a terrace floating above the lush Ayung River valley. The pool spreads out to form an elongated rectangle until it seems to disappear down the terraced jungle hillside. The Ali Ubud Resort blends a contemporary design and traditional Balinese architecture with secluded courtyards, spacious terraces and private gardens which create an intimate feeling like none other. “The resort's 56 rooms and villas are housed in 14 two-storey blocks designed to resemble a Balinese village. All rooms and villas have panoramic views of the magical Ayung River and surrounding volcanoes. The Deluxe Rooms on the ground floor feature individual garden terraces and a back courtyard with an open-air bathroom and shower. The Superior Rooms on the upper floor feature a private balcony and a daybed where you can chill out, read a book or just daydream while enjoying the unobstructed views. There are also eight villas. Four superb Valley Villas offer a spacious walk-around deck and are perched over the valley affording spectacular views of the Ayung River. The four luxuriously spacious Pool Villas offer a complete retreat experience with a private pool bordered by landscaped gardens, an open-air bathtub surrounded by a lotus pond, LCD TV and entertainment system, and the exclusive privilege of personalized leisure concierge services and in-villa dining and spa treatments.”
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The Pimalai Resort and Spa http://www.pimalai.com/en/index.asp on Koh Lanta, Thailand boasts and amazing fresh-water infinity edge pool that sets about 50 meters above sea level allowing you spectacular views of the beach and the sea. This pool looks like a temple site with it’s beautiful architecture at this boutique luxury beach resort.
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Another amazing sight to see pool in Thailand a few steps from the beach, is the pool at The Library http://www.thelibrary.co.th/index1.html in Koh Samui, Thailand. This vivid red pool is created by using mosaic Italian glass tiles in red, yellow and orange where at night, the underwater lights transform this pool into a dazzling sight perfect for dinner and drinks. The pool is set on the beachfront and is surrounded by a wooden deck with red mattresses and black bean bags.
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The rooftop pool at The Standard http://www.standardhotels.com/los-angeles/ in downtown Los Angeles, CA is one of the most coveted nightlife hotspots. Situated on the rooftop of this 12-story hotel, the pool has panoramic views of the city. The turquoise heated pool stands out sharply against the red Astroturf sundeck with waterbed cabanas complete with a poolside bar.
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For that perfect ah-ha moment, be sure to visit Six Senses Hideaway http://www.sixsenses.com/SixSensesZighyBay/ in Zighy Bay, Oman located 90 minutes from Dubai. The Six Senses Hideaway is located with dramatic mountains on one side and the sandy beach of Zighy Bay, on the other.
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Hermitage Bay http://www.hermitagebay.com/ at this all-inclusive Antigua resort sits along a narrow dirt road and spleenful located between the pristine hillside and the turquoise Caribbean waters. With 25 individual cottages, you are in for a treat of tranquility and complete serenity.
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The Joule Hotel http://www.thejouledallas.com in Dallas, TX projects their pool eight feet over the sidewalk from the edge of the 10th floor including a glass window at its end, providing swimmers with the sensation of swimming off the building's edge.
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An exotic jungles surround you at Heritance Kandalama, Sri Lanka http://www.heritancehotels.com/kandalama/ where their infinity pool finds the green water blending into green rooftop lawns to virgin woodlands.
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At the Marina Bay Sands http://www.marinabaysands.com/ in Singapore, you will ne staying at Asia's most spectacular business and leisure destination with over 2,500 rooms and suites, state-of-the-art convention and exhibition facilities, theaters, world-class casino, entertainment and the best shopping and dining in Singapore crowned by the Sands SkyPark. With amazing views of the Singapore skyline from the 57th floor, it is longer than the Eiffel tower laid on its side, it’s length is equivalent to four-and-a-half A380 Jumbo Jets, it has one of the largest gravity-defying edges in the world which holds up to 900 people. This Singapore hotel and casino offers a most unique swim!
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For a sight to behold of an architectural marvel, visit Jade Mountain, St. Lucia http://www.jademountainstlucia.com/ where there infinity pools “are not accoutrements, but primary elements of the building's design. With sizes ranging from 400 to 900 square feet, the design of each pool is unique both in colour and shape. The infinity pools are meant to serve as organic components in each suite, as well as in the building as a whole; their sizes increase in relation to the different square footage of the different room categories: GALAXY, SUN, MOON and STAR.

All pools feature shallow water lounging areas in addition to a large swimming area. They have been surfaced entirely in one-of-a-kind glass tiles, which have been specifically designed for JADE MOUNTAIN.

Each of the infinity pools has its own individually designed glass tile color scheme which is then carried on into the individual bathrooms, giving each suite its own unique - and rather bold - personality. The glass tile texture is complex in reflective and prismatic ways with each piece of tile unique due to their custom hand crafted fabrication.

The infinity pools are equipped with fibre optics to illuminate them at night. Guests have the option of allowing the system to cycle through a range of colours or setting it to one particular shade.

Jade Mountain was conceived as a place in which guests would be exposed to a carefully orchestrated sensory experience. The infinity pools are integral to this. As a visual element, water flowing over a vanishing edge serves to draw the view into the room, linking the view with water, and water with sky and land, sun and stars.”
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Poised on the cliff high above the Aegean, Perivolas Luxury Hotel http://www.perivolassuites.gr/about?lang=en in Santorini is a place where the rest of the world seems to disappear. With expansive views, ultimate luxury and absolute tranquil surroundings, your days by the pool are sure to leave you refreshed and never wanting to leave. Perivolas Hotel is only a short walk from Oia, the most beautiful village on Greece’s most romantic and dramatic island, Santorini.
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The Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagoyo http://www.fourseasons.com/costarica/ creates am ambience of luxury in a natural setting with a resort that spills down a coastal hillside to two unspoiled beaches of golden sand. With a spa, championship golf, the tropical dry forest complete with an amazing infinity pool, this resort will leave you wanting more.
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Want to be at your own private island? Be sure to visit W Hotels on Fesdu Island http://www.starwoodhotels.com/whotels/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=1585 where this private island provides you with luxury, white sand beaches, turquoise lagoons, and breathtaking reefs.
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Why not visit a pool for every mood at the JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/cunjw-jw-marriott-cancun-resort-and-spa/? Indulge yourself at the adults only pool with a swim-up bar, lounge in either of the two free-form or infinity pools overlooking the Caribbean, For those who want more adventure, be sure to go diving in the 20-foot deep, PADI-certified diving pool.
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For those that enjoy the adventures of diving, be sure to go to the deepest indoor swimming pool in the world at 105 feet at Nemo 33 http://www.nemo33.com/en in Belgium. Here the water is so warm in their solar heated pool that you don’t need a wetsuit and you are able to get a variety of scuba certifications.
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One of the most popular attractions in Iceland is the Blue Lagoon http://www.bluelagoon.com/Geothermal-spa/ where you will have a unique geothermal spa experience. Renew and relax in this lagoon that holds six million liters of geothermal seawater (which is renewed every 40 hours) with a water temperature of 98-102°F all while soaking up the beautiful scenery and breathing the fresh, clean air.
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Las Ventanas al Paraiso http://www.lasventanas.com/en/index.cfm where this desert beach resort in Los Cabos captivates its guests with expansive suites, a world-class spa, inspired cuisine and an intoxicating ambiance along with a several infinity pools that spill into one another throughout this sprawling, luxury resort overlooking the Sea of Cortez off Mexico's Baja coast. Unique in-room tequila welcome, 24-hour room service, live entertainment nightly, access to The Spa at Las Ventanas & fitness center, DVD library, twice-daily housekeeping with nightly turndown service, luxury tennis, fresh fruit replenished daily, bottled water, enhanced poolside service & amenities, personal butler service for each one-bedroom and three-bedroom luxury suite ~ it’s been said that butlers reportedly bring drinks, chilled towels and wireless TVs right to your chaise ~ now that‘s what I call service in paradise!
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What a finish in Bora Bora Nui Hilton http://www1.hilton.com/en_US/hi/hotel/PPTBNHI-Hilton-Bora-Bora-Nui-Resort-Spa/index.do suspended between turquoise waters and endless sky. Besides the endless amenities, you can enjoy even more water from your private water side balcony, canopy beds, Italian marble bathroom and better yet, watch Bora Bora’s exotic marine life float past the glass floor viewing panels in your guest room.
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