Behind the scenes with…Carol Turner, livestock office manager

What began as a temporary gig helping a friend, has turned into 25 years of service for Carol Turner, the N.C. State Fair livestock office manager. Carol oversees a six-person staff and coordinates with superintendents for each of the animal species during the Fair. For the past several weeks, she has been camped out in the Gate 9 ticket booth preparing for this year’s show. Her staff will join her in the Graham Building after Labor Day, where they’ll remain throughout the Fair.  One of the biggest challenges for Carol this year is converting the old entry database to new software. The software, Blue Ribbon, will be used to…

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N.C. State Fair is cooking up some fantastic contests for 2010

The North Carolina State Fair is many things to many people, but an underlying theme is a celebration of tradition. The fair’s annual cooking contests, featuring a mix of friendly competition, local agricultural products and grandma’s time-tested recipes with some new twists, exemplify that.  The 2010 N.C. State Fair will feature 12 sponsored cooking contests focusing on everything from appetizers to main dishes to desserts. The contests are open to pretty much anyone—young and old, male and female and experienced and inexperienced cooks.  With a smidgen of this, a pinch of that and a dash of something else, winning recipes come from a diverse group…

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Apprentice contest offers inside look at skilled construction trade

This summer, I built three flowerboxes as a graduation gift for my girlfriend. I doubt my boxes would pass North Carolina Department of Labor standards, but they looked very nice (thanks in part to my girlfriend’s great paint job). If you would like to see craftsmen who can pass NCDOL standards, visit the tents at the Apprentice Contest Pavilion between Gates 9 and 10 next week for the best in carpentry, masonry, electrical, plumbing and HV/AC-R competition. The contests showcase more than 50 of about 20,000 people in North Carolina receiving apprenticeship training on the job. Everyone will enjoy watching and…

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TXT-O-LYMPIX

Luckily, our texters will be on their own two feet. Photo from Matthias Bethke. A few months ago we held our first Deep Fried blog contest for texting pros to announce the Fair’s first texting contest. We promised details, and here they are. The TXT-O-LYMPIX (love the name) kicks off tomorrow at 6:30 p.m. in the Folk Festival tent, which is near Gate 10 behind our offices, the Kerr Scott Building. You can register Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the entry office inside Gate 11 in the administration office. You’ll be handsomely rewarded for your thumb-nastics: First…

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You can’t win if you don’t register!

The decorated cakes are always a popular. An article in today’s N&O about recipe contests got me thinking about cooking contests. And then I had an “AACK” moment when I realized that NOT ONLY is the fair just 29 DAYS AWAY, the deadline to register for competitions is only A WEEK away. A few deadlines have already passed (livestock and wine categories are a few), but most will close out on Sept. 24. The good news is that you can do it all online this year or print out an entry form and mail it in, as long as it…

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‘Moos Ireland’: Cow Beauty Pageant

I just came across the Bailey’s Champion Cow Competition held every year in Ireland. Bailey’s, the maker of Irish cream, holds the contest in which 30 cows compete for the countrywide title. (Get it? “Moos Ireland?” As in, watch out Miss Ireland, Bessie is on your tail? Sorry, you can blame that pun on Ireland’s RTE News.) The ladies are judged on how shapely their legs are, the curves of the backs and the shape of their udders. I couldn’t find a pictures of this year’s winner Lumville Danois 2, but I have to say that the 2006 winner above…

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Scrapbooking at the Fair

Scrapblog is a really neat site that allows you to combine photos and text into pre-made scrapbook pages based around different themes. It’s super easy and looks really professional–and best of all, it allows you to post your creations straight to sites such as Blogger, WordPress, Facebook and MySpace. I used the road trip one above–because what’s better than piling in the car with the whole family and making your way to the Fair? Scroll through the three pages I created with pictures from past Fairs. (If you’re having trouble loading the pages, click on “View Full Screen” to blow…

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OMG, TXTING COMP @ THE ST8 FAIR!

Start your intense thumb exercise regimens now to prepare for the State Fair’s first cell phone texting competition. We’re looking for texters ages 10 and up with the gift of speed…or any adult with the confidence to go up against some of the more “seasoned” competitors. We don’t have all the details set in stone quite yet, but here’s what we do know: The actual contest will have anywhere from 50 to 100 competitors. There won’t be an entry fee and get this…the grand prize for the fastest texter will be $500! Ribbons and State Fair gifts will be awarded…

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