I know you've been suffering through the hot, dry, smoky fire season, but summer is quickly passing you by and that means the Ravalli County Fair in Hamilton is upon us! I know you've been inside, working on that quilt or perfecting your perfect pie recipe. You may have a photo or three that might be good for a blue ribbon. The Hamilton fair is a true exhibitors' fair after all, with thousands of entries each year.

If this is you, you have a deadline for the paperwork that registers your entry. That deadline is FRIDAY, August 13. You don't need to have completed your entry, but you must have your entry form filled out and into the Fair Office in Hamilton by the end of day Friday. An easy way to do that is to file it electronically. Go here and do it today.

Perhaps you've never been an exhibitor. Grab a fair book from the fair office at the Ravalli County Fairgrounds or go online to check out the 33 different departments - from Baked Goods to Flowers, from Porcelain Art to Vegetables, from Honey to Hobby Creations, from Photography to Rabbits. There's no entry fee and you can win ribbons and the acclaim of your friends.

The Ravalli County Fair will be Wednesday, September 1st, through Saturday, September 4th. You don't need to finish your entry until the Sunday before the fair, which is August 29. You take your entry (except Flowers) to the fairgrounds from 12 noon to 7 p.m. The Flowers are accepted on Monday, August 30, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

There is one category where you need to have your entry done this week. The Poetry Contest. The poem has to be submitted by 5 p.m. Friday. That allows the judges to pick the winners in the three age categories, K - 6th grade, 7th - 12th grade and 18 years old and Older.

We'll have lots more about this year's fair as we count down the days. We're overdue for Fair Food, since we were denied the opportunity to "Eat our way through the Fair" last year during the pandemic. Get ready, here it comes - "Blue Jeans and Rodeo Scenes" - The 2021 Ravalli County Fair and Rockin' RC Rodeo.

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