Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fun Stinks!

Article written by Teresa Gardner for the North Plains Beacon NewspaperFUMI. It's a rather curious looking acronym...and an even more curious sounding one. FUMI has nothing to do with the highly pungent properties of garlic, but rather a group of folks looking for fun at the family-friendly 13th Annual Elephant Garlic Festival in North Plains.

FUMI organizer Cynthia Parker was intrigued by the event's billboard, "Fun Stinks" on Hwy 26. "I have driven past that sign for years and have always wanted to get involved. I love local events and it happened to fall on the same weekend as our family reunion, so I decided to make it part of the family activities."
FUMI, pronounced foo'-me, stands for Family Unit Most Important, a family organization formed in 1974 - complete with constitution and articles - to promote family closeness amongst the Walter and Gloria Richardson clan of Forest Grove. After 36 years, FUMI is still going strong; the focal point being a reunion biennially. One of the reunion activities this year was a trip to North Plains to enjoy a little family bonding at the garlic fest fun run. Fifteen members of the family - aged 3 to 63 - donned sneakers and made their way to the finish line of the two mile run. Some held hands; others wagered a friendly competition and one mother even carried her toddler in her backpack the entire route.

Parker opted for the shorter run instead of the 10k race because all ages and levels could participate and it would be a great way to unify cousins, aunts, uncles, siblings and grandparents. "We're all big runners in our family and garlic eaters too! The event combined two of our loves. The elephant garlic we "won" for finishing the race was a nice touch also. Everyone had a ton of fun...a cherished memory for our family."

After the race and thinking of creative ways to use the elephant garlic for the remainder of the reunion weekend, family members joked that maybe the family should change the pronounciation of FUMI to...well, fyoom'-ee! Fun really does stink, at least in North Plains.

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