Auditorium exhibits at the Webster County Fair don't officially open until 9 a.m. today, but 4-H members were kept extra busy as they presented their final projects before the judges and waited to hear the final results Tuesday.
More than 200 4-H members representing the 15 clubs throughout Webster County showcased their auditorium exhibits in family and consumer sciences, visual arts, photography, personal development, mechanical and engineering, ag and natural resources, horticulture and communications, which will be on display through Sunday.
As 4-H members prepared for the fair, they were required to come up with a goal for each individual project to share with the judges, and share their personal experiences as they are interviewed by a judge.
Alexa Anderson, a member of the Gowrie Groundbreakers 4-H Club, listens as visual arts judge Bertha Shaw critiques her painting during judging day at the Webster County Fair Tuesday afternoon.
Dylan Johnson, a member of the Gowrie Groundbreakers, brought chocolate star peanut butter cookies to be judged. As Barb Sexton, a food and nutrition judge sampled a cookie and looked it over for uniformity, she asked Johnson about his baking experience, which he described as a sort of "trial and error"
"I tried them three or four different times," Johnson told the judge. "Each time it was a little bit different recipe. I found the recipe for these cookies online, it only needed one egg but i added two because the dough got a little clumpy."
Johnson's cookies earned him a blue ribbon for the day, which he was satisfied with.
"I liked the way they turned out, they were good," he said.
Alexa Anderson, also a member of the Gowrie Groundbreakers, got a head start on her visual arts projects throughout the year by using some of her school art projects for the fair.
"I have 12 paintings and drawings," Anderson said. "They were all projects from school art classes. Visual arts is pretty much my main project area besides my horses."
Madison Anderson, a member of the Washington Winners 4-H Club, recycled items into art for two of her visual arts projects, including a decorative red, white and blue flag painted on a rustic piece of old tin, and a garden ornament constructed from old crystal bowls and red bottles and glassware. Anderson also had cooking and photography entries to be judged, but said the best part of the day is seeing the final result of nearly a years worth of hard work.
"I like to see how it all pays off," she said.
Breanna Anderson, an Elkorn Earlybirds member, had a full list of projects to be judged throughout the day and coming week.
Anderson made pineapple-filled fruit bars and caramel cracker bars to be judged in food and nutrition, but had a number of others to be critiqued.
"I've got foods, flowers and woodworking," she said. "My favorite project is probably growing my own flowers."
Even in getting this year's 4-H projects judged, there is always time for 4-Hers to start thing about next year.
"One thing I like about judging is you always hear about what you can do differently for next year," said Johnson.
The Webster County Fair begins today with 4-H rabbit and poultry check-in starting at 7 a.m. and will continue through Sunday.