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 is received by 5 p.m. on the 24th. So get moving if you hope to win a blue ribbon! (And to answer a popular question: No, you don’t have to deliver your item now. Those are still delivered the week before the Fair. Check the Premium Book for more information.)
Oh, and BTW, there were many conspiracy theories floating around last year when we moved the competition deadline to a few weeks before the Fair. I can guarantee there was no plan to keep people out of the contests. The reason is simply because we FINALLY embraced technology. (You just don’t know how happy that makes us in the press office!) Still, that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense…if we finally have computerized the system, why does it now take longer? That’s because last year we only accepted paper entries, so everything had to be loaded into the computers beforehand. There are thousands of entries, so this is a very time consuming project. This year, we are accepting online and paper entries, so we still have to allot time for data entry. So, we thank everyone for their patience and cooperation while we improve our competitions!