North Carolina State Fair

Entering a State Fair contest? These ladies see your talent

Posted October 10, 2012 4:14 p.m. EDT
Updated October 10, 2012 11:48 p.m. EDT

— The gates open to the North Carolina State Fair on Thursday afternoon, but for one group of ladies, the fair started months ago.

Betty Shaw runs the fair’s entry department, which sorts through thousands of contest entries that people submit each year. Eighteen ladies do all the paperwork for every entry, including cakes, cookies, canned goods, quilts, dresses, photography, etc.

Everything gets an entry tag, and the ribbons are prepared for the winners.

“We ordered 30,495 ribbons this year,” said Nellie Sanders, with the entry department. “If it wasn’t for this department, you would not have much of a fair … It takes all these ladies in here as a team to get it done.”

Most of the ladies have worked in the department for 10 or 20 years, but they still look forward to every October. They say they have already begun working on next year's fair.

“It's just like old home week when we all get back together to work here in the entry department. I wouldn't miss it for anything,” said Janet Burke.

The 2012 State Fair runs Oct. 11-21.