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Fishing for fall
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Jami Dunlap has wishful thinking with her handmade sign Saturday during a very warm Autumn Street Fair.

It felt like a Fourth of July celebration Saturday in downtown McMinnville for the 24th annual Autumn Street Fair.

The festival was autumn in name only as temperatures hit the mid-80s to make for an usually balmy event.

"We've sold a bushel of water already," said vendor Gwen Hildreth. "We're going to call her husband to bring us some more," she said referring to daughter Lesley Neale. "I know we can sell it."

At $1 a bottle, the water was money well spent as visitors trudged up and down packed streets under a high sun. Hildreth said sales of her decorative pumpkins made from bedspreads were phenomenal.

"There were people waiting here at 8 a.m.," said Hildreth, who estimated she sold about 30 decorations in two hours.

Jami Dunlap had strong interest in her vertical signs that proclaimed "Hello Fall." She uses stencils to paint some of her letters and paints others by hand.

"It depends on how steady I am that day," said Dunlap, who has been selling her work about five years. "I'd been painting at home and so many people told me 'You ought to sell this' so that's what I started doing."

Britney Greene had several people admiring her large pumpkins, but they didn't like the thought of lugging a heavy pumpkin around the street fair. She was having better luck with her produce.

"I've probably sold more tomatoes than anything else," Greene said.