State Fairs, 2011

Family Heirloom Recipes Competition, 2011


Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio


Amy Kent's Lemon Pie

Elma’s Lemon Pie, First Prize, Amy Kent of Mount Vernon, Ohio (image by Peter Engler)

Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance is dedicated to exploring, celebrating and preserving unique food traditions and their cultural contexts in the American Midwest. By hosting public events, developing archival resources and generating publications, the Alliance celebrates the distinctiveness of a region that is as varied in tastes and traditions as it is in its geography from the Great Lakes to the Great Plains.  Exploring indigenous foods like Wisconsin cranberries and Minnesota walleye, celebrating iconic flavors like the wheat and corn from across the prairies, chronicling immigrant cuisines from early Europeans to 21st-century newcomers, or highlighting fish boils and fine dining in small towns and big cities, the Alliance promotes and chronicles the diversity of the region’s culinary character.

Our Family Heirloom Recipe competition seeks your best made from scratch heirloom recipe suitable for a family or community dinner.  To encourage delving deep into your family’s culinary history, please submit family recipes prior to 1950.  We look forward to learning about and tasting your treasured foods.
PRIZES: 1st place – $150.,  2nd place – $100.,  3rd place – $50
Taste  50%,  History  40%,  Appearance  10%
• Enter your best scratch family heirloom recipe suitable for a family or community dinner. Recipe should be from before 1950.
• Entrants must be at least 18 years of age, one entry per person.  Contestants who participated before may not repeat previously entered recipes.
• Each entry must be created from one recipe.
• Every ingredient must be listed in exact measurement (no rounded teaspoons, etc.) type of ingredient (example: self-rising flour) must be specified. No mixes may be used. Follow general proper recipe procedure, listing all steps of preparation, pan sizes, temperature and baking time.
• Entries must be typed on 8-1/2 x 11 inch paper. On one page provide the recipe and contestant’s name, age at time of contest, address, phone number and email address. On a separate sheet(s) present the recipe’s history. You may include who passed the recipe down to you, ethnicity (if relevant), number of years the recipe has been in your family and any interesting information about its place in your family’s traditions.  Note the history accounts for 40% of the score so be sure to do justice to your recipe’s story. Please consult under the ‘events’ tab for examples of recipes and their histories..
• By submitting your entry, you accept official rules and agree to be bound by the judges’ decisions, which will be final. You also agree that your recipe and history narrative will become the property of Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance, which reserves the right to edit, adapt, copyright, publish and use without compensation to you.
• By participating, contestants also understand and accept the right of Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance to use contestant names, photos, history narratives and recipes for publicity without compensation.
• Each winning entry will be in a display case (18” x 18”). Your product should be displayed simply though attractively, with the use of props, such as a photograph, placemat, napkins, glassware or flowers. 
• Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance is not responsible for lost or illegible recipes, nor is the fair.
• Taxes on the prizes are the responsibility of the winner.
• Recipes from the Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance website ( are not eligible for entry in this contest.



Illinois State Fair:

Competition: Saturday, August 13, check in: 2 – 3 pm, awards 5:15 pm
– Premium book:, page 101
– Application form, deadline is July 15th,:
– Exhibitor card, submitted with application:
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Indiana State Fair:

Competition: Friday, August 12, check in: 1 to 3 pm.  Judging commences at 3 pm at the Ellison Bakery Culinary Kitchen in the Culinary Arts building.
– Premium book:, see page 32 of pdf “Department 114: Home and Family Arts” (hardcopy: pages 179-180)
– Application form deadline is postmarked by July 1: “Home and Family Arts”  (link listed under “Department 114”)

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Iowa State Fair:

Competition: Sunday, August 14, judging begins at 2 pm.
– Premium book: see page 71 of pdf or hardcopy
– General rules:
– Application form, deadline postmarked by July 1:

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Minnesota State Fair:

Competition: Sunday, August 21, product is dropped off from 8 am to 11 am.  Judging is closed to the public and done in advance of the fair’s opening on August 25.
– Creative Activities home page:
– Premium book: see page 12 of pdf or page 41 of hard copy
– Online Application form, deadline is Tuesday, August 9 at 4:30 pm:

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Missouri State Fair:

Competition: Saturday, August 13, check in: 2 pm.
– Premium book: see page 4 of pdf
– Application form, deadline is July 20 pr $10 late fee until July 29:
– Recipe form:

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Ohio State Fair:

Competition: Monday, August 1, check-in noon – 1:00 pm, judging begins at 1:00 pm in the DiSalle Center Auditorium
– Premium book: see page 5
– Application form, deadline is June 20th:
To apply and pay online:
To print out form for mail-in application:
Please DO NOT USE Ohio State Fair’s recipe form.

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