This year I entered my annual village show for the very first time, to try my hand at exhibiting veg and fruit that I’d grown or preserved, as well as cut flowers, photography and crafts. The show took place on Sunday in the village hall, I entered 13 classes out of a possible 46 but abandoned the sweetcorn class due to worrying they were not up to scrutiny, in hindsight this was a mistake because my not-so-shabby-after-all-cobs would have been placed due to a low turn out for this particularly class. The only exhibitor for this class scooped first place as well as 3 points towards best in show. You live and learn.
Below are the classes I entered and the results alongside:
- 3. 2 sweetcorn – Abandoned!
- 10. 3 beetroot – First place!! 3 points
- 11. Collection of any 6 vegetables, 1 of each – Second place, 2 points
- 14. Oddest vegetable – Second place, 2 points
- 15. Arrangement of garden flowers in a 1 lb jam jar – Not placed, rookie mistake my jar was too big. Whoops.
- 19. 3 cooking apples – Second place, 2 points
- 20. 3 eating apples – Not placed
- 21. 3 pears – Not placed
- 26 1 jar of chutney – Not placed
- 27. 1 jar of jam – Second place, 2 points
- 28. 1 jar of curd – Not placed
- 37. Photograph titled “Nature’s Bounty” – Not placed
- 41. Handmade item of jewellery – Not placed
I think I did pretty well for my first go! I took home some prize cards which I’m really proud of (especially the jam class using my own grown strawberries, 2nd out of 13 entries) and I picked up lots of ideas and tips on how the show point system works as well as praise and encouragement from the show organisers, other exhibitors and spectators. It was a great day and I had fun, it was also a great way to meet new people in the village and supporting the show helps towards keeping this traditional event alive.
So what have I learned for next year? Quite a bit actually, such as not allowing myself to be so self-critical of my abilities (I didn’t enter any baking tut tut), to enter what I have grown even if it’s looking a little tired (you just never know), oh, and to not leave fruit picking till the morning of the show, because of this (trying to match apples and pears for size without any blemishes took forever) I got to the village hall later than I’d planned for, leaving little time to display my items before the judges arrived. It all felt a bit rushed but I did it, with minutes to spare!
I will definitely enter again next year and I will aim to be more organised!