Krista Corner Havre Daily News email@example.com
County folks gathered in the Community Center at the Great Northern Fairgrounds Wednesday to judge their neighbors and friends in fair-friendly competition. Judging began early in the day and did not finish until almost 2 p.m. Janet Crowder said this year was her first to judge in the open class competition and it was a difficult task. “I had to take everything down and look at it,” she said. “I had to look at seams and color schemes.” Crowder judged the creative home arts portion of the competition. Crowder added that in order to be fair, she did not want the names of entrants exposed. “I tried to hide the name, but with the youth, I like how they put ages and how long they’ve been (sewing) so you can be a little lenient,” she said. Mary Saboe, open class competition coordinator, said many of the current judges have been helping with the competition for as long as she has five years. Saboe said how judges qualify and are chosen for duty depends on the coordinator. “It seems like each coordinator gets their own judges,” she said. “Bob (Doney) and Cecil (Durbin) have been with us the longest.” Doney of Bob’s Greenhouse judged the agriculture and horticulture entries. Durbin, a local photographer, judged the photography portion of the fine arts category. Don Gomke judged the cooking and canning while Suzanne Huston judged the art competition. Many other volunteers helped out, Saboe added. The open class competition’s history is rooted deep in the fibers of Great Northern Fair, since the beginning when neighbor's showing their Wares was often the county fair highlight. And not many changes have taken place over the years, Saboe said, though the photography contest will probably see some improvements next year. Contestants in the future may be required to submit at least a 5X7 matted photo. This year, as in previous years, the photos were every size from 4X6 up to 8X10, with a number of sizes in between. Saboe said the only real change in the open class competitions is in the number of entrants. “We built it back up,” she said. “I take the booklets and hand them out, and I say I want to see your stuff at the fair this year,’” she added laughing. “I try to keep some (booklets) in my car.” Because of Saboe’s efforts and the those of other volunteers, she said the competition is continuing to slowly grow. “We got some really nice stuff,” she said. “We got more stuff this year than we did last year. I would like to urge anyone who does anything that can be entered to enter, and remind everyone that without participation we won’t have a fair. We would like to see more projects from organizations like the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts.” Fair-goers can view the more than 300 entries from noon until 9 p. m. through Saturday and from noon until 5 p.m. Sunday.