Enter blue ribbon produce at the 2023 Clay County Fair

Spencer, Iowa — Gardeners are encouraged to enter their blue ribbon best in the Fields and Gardens Department at the 2023 Clay County Fair powered by SMU, Sept. 9-17.

One of the Fair’s original competitive departments, Fields and Gardens will yet again have another great year of showing. “I am excited to be taking over this position and work to make this event great,” stated first-year superintendent, Hillary Stevenson.

Stevenson may be new to the position, but is no amateur gardener and is very qualified. She plans to stick to the tradition of this event and also grow it by adding other divisions in the future including heirloom vegetables, something the Fair hasn’t seen yet.

The Fields and Gardens Department will again feature the Largest Pumpkin Contest, where producers can enter the largest weighing pumpkin from their patch and see who will win the title. Along with this contest, there is also the Best Corn Contest where an exhibitor can bring in their best ten ears of corn to be judged.

In addition to the vegetable portion of the Fields and Gardens Department, there are fruit classes as well. These classes include grapes, plums, raspberries, strawberries, and many more. The highlight of the fruit classes is the apple division where the exhibitor with the best tray of five apples will take the top prize.

Entries are not limited to just fruits and vegetables. Categories such as the garden scarecrow contest and yard people, which are open to all ages, showcase creativity and design.  Other contests within the departments not focused around produce are decorative corn with husks and birdhouse gourds.

Entries are open to anyone from any county or state.  Check out the exhibitor handbook online at www.claycountyfair.com or pick one up at the Fair Administrative Offices to find the rules and guidelines to enter your work at the Fair.  Pre-registration for all exhibits is encouraged and can be completed online, by mail, or in person by August 21.  For those who choose not to pre-register, registration can also occur when entries are accepted at the Fields and Gardens Building on Wednesday, Sept. 6 (5:00 pm-8:00 pm) and Thursday, Sept. 7 (9:00 am-5:00 pm) with judging scheduled for Friday, Sept. 8.

About The Clay County Fair & Events Center Rooted in Tradition, the Clay County Fair and Events Center is a year-round facility that annually hosts more than 300 events, including its signature event, the Clay County Fair powered by SMU. Known as “The World’s Greatest County Fair” since 1917, the Clay County Fair attracts more than 300,000 guests each September for nine days of world-class entertainment, competition, food, fun, and the largest farm machinery show at any fair in the United States. Additional information can be found at claycountyfair.com.