Baby tomatoes

Baby tomatoes

Monday, September 1, 2014

Goodbye to summer, and a county fair wrapup

Ahhhh September has arrived. Labor Day weekend is over and summer festivities are ending. Before we know it the leaves will be changing, frost will be kissing our gardens goodbye and pumpkin everything will be everywhere. I do so love autumn.

Along with the end of the summer is the end of the fair season. The Iowa State Fair ended two weeks ago but our Guthrie County Fair is ending today. Time to load up the livestock, get the last funnel cake and corndog, ride the last rides of the summer, and of course....... pick up the entries submitted by folks with every talent imaginable. From quilting to baking to floral decorations, just about everything is represented here. Antiques, flawless garden produce, the tallest cornstalk- so much to see!

A few of the other competitors' entries on drop off day
And I won't lie....... I feel a sense of dread as I head to the Arts Building and see how I fared with my entries in the Open Class- Canned Foods and Dehydrated Foods. This is my second time entering anything in a fair and I'm just as nervous this year as I was last year! I'm a confident canner and food preserver but there is a lot of competition out there these days. Dropping off the jars last week I noticed there were quite a few more competitors than the prior year. So, yes, I did have butterflies. 

The busy fairgrounds didn't help. It's slow going with folks leading horses and other livestock around. A major storm system had passed through overnight leaving the roads and parking areas very muddy and sloppy. I found one of the few remaining grassy areas and took a deep breath. 

With the Tilt-a-Whirl and Space Rocket generating screams in the background I walked into the Arts Building, and found an awesome surprise! My entries did fabulous! Last week I dropped off twenty-four jars and two plastic bags of dehydrated vegetables and hoped for the best. Today I was seeing my success- sixteen first place blue ribbons, four second place red ribbons AND the Grand Prize for winning the most blue ribbons!

Here is the breakdown: 

Blue Ribbons:
  • Pear Halves
  • Corn
  • Bread and Butter Pickles
  • Whole Dill Pickles
  • Dill Spears
  • Dill Chips
  • Pickled Hot Peppers
  • Pickled Green Tomatoes
  • Dill Zucchini Relish
  • Asian Plum Sauce
  • Gooseberry Blueberry Jam
  • Cherry Jam
  • Blueberry Pineapple Jam
  • Apple Butter
  • Cranberry Apple Relish
  • Dehydrated Ghost chilis
Red Ribbons:
  • Carrots
  • Peach Jam
  • Applesauce
  • Dehydrated Sliced Tomatoes
2014 was a success!!
Add to that an awesome set of ceramic mixing bowls as the Grand Prize for the most blue ribbons awarded- and THAT my friends, is how I am closing out the 2014 Guthrie County Fair! See you next year!


  1. Congratulations! That is so exciting! I haven't participated in any fairs, but you've inspired me to put this on my bucket list.

    1. Go for it Karen !!!! This was only my second time!! Maybe next year I'll try the State Fair!