Kentucky State Fair Premium Book User’s Guide
You’ve decided to enter the Kentucky State Fair. GREAT! Whether it took years of coaxing or you’re simply entering on a whim, we’re excited you decided to be a part of the Kentucky State Fair this year.
Never entered before? The Kentucky State Fair premium book can be a little overwhelming. First: It’s BIG. Second: It’s full of rules and regulations, which are necessary to keep the competition fair.
Pro-tip: Save time and only read what’s necessary in the premium book. Don’t read the whole book. A lot of work goes into creating the book, but there’s a reason you don’t see it on the best sellers list.
So what do you need to read?
- The general rules, which are the first 19 pages of the premium book.
- The section related to what you’re entering. For example: You create a fantastic handwoven scarf that deserves a blue-ribbon. On our website we’ve already divided the premium book so you just need to find your Department. Go to the the Premium Book and click on Textiles for your scarf. Here you will find some overall information about the textile department and some basic rules. From there find the more specific type of textile arts and see if there are any additional rules.
What do these words mean? (In the context of entering the Fair)
- Superintendent – Head honcho for the department you’re entering. They’re the go-to expert on your department, the rules and the premiums or prizes.
- Department – The Fair is divided into departments to help make the rules and information more specific. It’s the broader category you’re entering. For example Textiles is a department.
- Division – Within departments there are divisions. For example, rugs and quilts are different divisions. Divisions can be based on type of entry, experience level or age of the exhibitor.
- Class – Within divisions, there are classes. It’s the specific competition you are entering. For example, a hand-quilted piece is a different class than machine-quilted entries. This allows everything to be judged fairly.
- Exhibitor – You! Exhibiting your talents at the Kentucky State Fair, whether it’s showcasing your animal in the show ring or displaying your quilt in the East Hall, makes you the exhibitor.
- Premiums – Prize money. In the premium book, this is often identified simply as 1st – 4th with the corresponding dollar amount.
- General Entry Departments – Are all the fun and interesting departments that aren’t livestock.
What are the departments?
There are 28 departments within the Kentucky State Fair.
Full list of departments
- Bee and Honey
- Country Ham
- Dairy Products
- Egg Show
- Field, Seed & Grain
- Fine Arts
- Fruits and Nuts
- Homemade Beer
- Homemade Wine
- Plants & Flower
- Vegetable and Melons
- Boer Goats
- Dairy Goats
How to Choose What Category to Enter
I’ve made this thing, now where do I enter it? The Premium Book is divided into sections based on where the display is found at the Fair. Sections include: Livestock, 4-H/FFA Youth Development, East Hall/South Wing and West Hall. After you find your section, look for your departments, then divisions and then classes.
Determining your department is fairly easy. You’re not going to enter a cake into the Beef Cattle Show. But it gets a little more complicated when you start looking at the different classes.
Each department is subdivided into different categories, whether it’s breed of cattle or type of baked goods. You can’t compare a pie to a cookie, can you?
So you go Department -> Division or Specific Section – > Class
Division: Specialty Baking
Class: French Macaron
Deadlines & Entering
Now that you know what you’re entering, you probably want to know the deadline. For General Entries, which includes anything without furs or feathers, the deadline is July 1. For livestock (beef, dairy, goats, swine, sheep) the deadline is July 10. Pigeons, Poultry and Rabbits deadline is July 18. Some departments have late and extra late deadlines. Check out the compete page for information.
The deadline to upload entries is 11:59 am on July 10. Click on “Upload files” and it will direct you to a page to upload your photos. Each file must be a JPEG file, no smaller than 5 megabytes and should be as a digital photo. Each photograph uploaded will be charged an additional $1.00.
Pro tip: Aside from photography, your project does not need to be complete by the entry deadline. You’ll bring the physical item right before the fair begins. Click here for a drop off and pick up schedule. Additionally you’ll receive specific drop off times and locations in the mail along with your exhibitor tickets.
How To Enter Online
All entry submissions are done online. Visit the compete page of our website, find your department and click “Enter Online ” which will take you to our online entry system.
Pro tip: Make sure you’re on the specific entry website for your department. There are different entry systems for livestock, rabbits, pigeons, poultry, homebrew, general entries and 4-H and FFA entries. You’ll know you are in the right or wrong area in step two of the entry system by looking at the entry options. If you don’t see your department, you’re on the wrong site.
- Register – You will register using your first and last name. Accounts must be created each year. If you entered in 2021 you will need to register again.
- Create a password and add all your details. You do not need a 4-H/FFA affiliation unless you are competing in those classes.
- Add your entries. This is where you’ll select for the department and class you found in the premium book. You will also select a division, based on your age and experience level at the Kentucky State Fair. Have more entries? Click the “add different entry” button and add anything else you want to enter.
- Now you can add your exhibitor tickets and any other items you need to purchase to your cart.
- Review your entries and double-check you didn’t miss anything.
- Pay for your entries and print the confirmation (just for your records).
- Relax! Or if you’re ambitious enter a different part of the fair.
Livestock Specific Information
The General Section of the species that you are entering has details about your species/breeds, each has their own rules and regulations.
- Regular Deadline – July 10
- Late Deadline – July 25
- Extra Late Deadline – August 3
No late entries accepted in the 4-H/FFA Livestock Show.
Pro-tip: Check out ShoWorks Passport, a free feature of ShoWorks, which allows you to enter all your animal’s information. It saves the details so you only have to enter animal information once and you’re ready to enter any livestock show that uses ShoWorks. Already registered your animals with ShoWorks passport? Select the saved animals for a quicker Kentucky State Fair entry process.
Are there late deadlines?
Some categories have late deadlines. They’ll be listed next to your department on our website.
Livestock has two late deadlines, which require an additional fee: July 25 and August 3. General entries has a late deadline of July 10.
How many items can I enter with one fee?
For general entries you can enter as many departments/divisions/items as you wish for the $15 fee. Only one entry per class.
Can an item compete in more than one class?
No, an item can only compete in one class.
Can I enter more than one item in a class?
No, only one entry per class. The entry should have a particular department/division/class. If you have an item that is in question, contact the Entry Department. If they are unable to answer the question, they will contact the Superintendent and provide you with the information.
When do I get my prize money?
Prize money will be calculated as soon as possible after the close of the fair. The goal is to have all premiums checks mailed by October 15, 2022. If a valid social security number/tax ID is not provided, a check will not be issued.
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