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Cotton Candy and Competition

Arlington County Fair celebrates its 30th anniversary and wows visitors with competitive exhibits feature.

A county fair. Pig races, puppet shows, indulging in cotton candy — activities such as these are what typically come to mind when one thinks of a county fair.

But there is another side to the family-friendly fair. The competitive side.

From Aug. 17-19, members of the community, young and old alike, visited the 30th Annual Arlington County Fair, held at the Thomas Jefferson Community Center.

There was music and laughter, a petting zoo and pony rides.

And there were the competitive exhibits.

While excited toddlers went on their first carousal rides and seasoned veterans of the fair enjoyed a piece of traditional funnel cake on the fair's outdoor grounds, inside the community center, displays ranging from Honey and Beeswax to Photography made up the competitive exhibits feature of the fair.

For whatever talent one possessed, the Arlington County Fair was sure to have an outlet. This year's exhibit was composed of 12 departments: Honey and Bees Wax, Decorated Food Products and Baked Goods, Food Preservation, Art Needlework and Wearing Apparel, Animals, Bears and Dolls, Crafts, Fine Arts, Photography, Herbs, Fruits, Nuts and Vegetables, Flowers, Arrangements and Potted Plants, Ceramics, and Education and Leisure.

Within each department were four age divisions, Division G for adults, Division T for teens ages 13 to 18, Division Y, for kids ages 7 to 12, and Division K for children 6 and under.

Jackie Abrams, Vice-Chair of the fair, entered the Scrap Booking section of the Crafts Department. "My daughter got me hooked on it," said Abrams of scrap booking. "It's just fun. I just enjoy doing it."

Six-year old Sophia Paldino, an avid jewelry maker, entered some of her jewelry as well as a caterpillar figurine, winning 1st and 2nd Premium ribbons respectively. "I just learned how to do this stuff," Paldino said with a wide grin. "I wanted to see how good it turned out."