Yesterday was a very interesting day for me. Why? Because yesterday, I was one of the two judges for the weaving and spinning home arts competition at the Maryland State Fair. It was a good time, getting to go over everyone’s entries with a fine tooth comb. Of course, doing that made it a long day. I didn’t get home until 8 PM.
Here are some observations:
- Judging was not as difficult as I thought it would be. This is partly we need more people to enter. I don’t remember one entry from the Howard County Fair that was entered into the state fair. That is kind of sad.
- Another reason why judging was not as difficult to do as anticipated is because the other judge and I agreed on how things should be judged and agreed on the ranking of items on the first time in most every case. We only had to talk things through in two or three classes because the entries were so close in quality.
- People try to push the rules. Someone tried to enter one item in three different categories. Problem was, the item only qualified for one of those categories. The other two categories, it did not qualify for even with the loosest reading of the category descriptions.
- People try to cheat outright. Someone actually tried to pass off commercially spun yarn as handspun. No. Really. Someone did. Why? I can only guess. I can tell you, no one is going to get rich from the prize money given at the fair, so there is no trip to Hawaii in store based on the possible winnings. This was pretty incredible to us.
In a future post, I will talk about why you should enter your local state and county fairs, if you have them. It will cover a variety of things, like what judges should be looking for, what to do after you get your entries back, etc.
Copyright 2008 by G. P. Donohue for textillian.com