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Rowan County Fair coming up Sept. 23-Oct. 1

By Amy-Lynn Albertson

Rowan County Extension director

Sept. 23-Oct. 1 is Fair Week in Rowan County. The Rowan County Agricultural and Industrial Fair is sponsored by the Faith and Spencer Jaycees. This year, the 2016 fair book is available online at www.rowancountyfair.net.

People wishing to enter items in the fair will need to download the fair book in order to know what division and class their item should be entered in. Competition is open to all Rowan County residents, and entry forms must be in to the Rowan County Extension Center by mail or in person by 5 p.m. Sept. 16.

Gardeners of flowers and vegetables, the fair is a great opportunity to show your skills. If your entry is judged the best, you get a blue ribbon, a $5 prize and bragging rights.

This year has been great for watermelons and peppers, and I expect the competition to be fierce. All vegetable categories are judged on uniformity, smoothness, trueness to type and freedom from blemishes.

The honey categories will be judged on density, absence of crystals, cleanliness, flavor, accuracy in filling and uniformity and, finally, container appearance. I hope to see lots of entries from our junior beekeepers.

The flower department is one of my favorites at the fair. If you are an amateur florist, take those skills to the fair. There is a list of categories in flower arrangements from floral centerpiece for a dining table to best arrangement of marigolds in a woven basket.

In the adult division, the bakery goods department entries are always tasty. The best bakers in the county are invited to exhibit their best and strut their stuff. All entries must be made from scratch except in the decorated cake category.

Young bakers can enter their goodies in the youth/junior division. There are youth baked goods categories for 6- to 13-year-olds, and junior baked goods categories for 14- to 19-year-olds.   Crafters, woodworkers, knitters, photographers and artists can showcase their skills in the home furnishing, clothing and arts and crafts departments.

The 4-H Junior Dog Show will be on Sunday, Sept. 25. This show is open to all youth ages 5-19 in Rowan County. The dog must be at least 4 months old and have vaccinations for distemper, parvo and rabies. There are 11 show classes, including senior citizen dogs (dogs 10 years or older), dress up, trick class and puppy group. All classes will be judged on grooming and showmanship. Only one exhibitor with each dog will receive free admission. Dogs must be registered with 4-H agent Matthew McClellan by 2:30 p.m. Sept. 25.

Don’t miss the action down at the barn during the fair. The dairy goat shows will be Friday, Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m., and Saturday, Sept. 24, at 1 p.m. The junior market lamb show and sale will be Wednesday, Sept. 28, at 6 p.m., beginning with showmanship. The last livestock shows for the fair will be the dairy cows on Friday, Sept. 30, at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 1, at 1 p.m.

Remember all entries for the fair must in entered by Friday, Sept 16 at 5 p.m. Entry forms must be received at the Cooperative Extension Office, 2727 Old Concord Road, in person or by mail no later than Sept. 16.

Entry forms must be completed before items are brought to Exhibit Hall at the fairgrounds. No entry will be taken at any time at the fair, unless approved in the office of the directors. If records are altered and do not conform with those entries on file, payment of premium will be withheld.

This year, admission to the fair is $5 per person and free for children under 36 inches tall. On school days, Tuesday and Wednesday, all school children in Rowan County are admitted with special tickets plus $1. Come down to the Rowan County Agricultural & Industrial Fair and help us celebrate 65 years, with some big pumpkins, show lambs and tasty cakes. For more information about the fair and entry forms, please go to www.rowancountyfair.net, or call the Cooperative Extension Office at 704-216-8970.

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