Back in time at Markham Fair, Stiff Competitions, 2006 to 2013

Back in time at Markham Fair, Stiff Competitions, 2006 to 2013

giant swing, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2008

Owing to the covid-19 pandemic, Markham Fair, like so many other events, was canceled for 2020.  We thought it fitting, then, to look back in time at Markham Fair as we have experienced it with our family over the past 40 years.

produce display in the general exhibits building, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2008

Markham Fair was not just about the livestock and poultry, parades or even the Midway and shows.

produce exhibit, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

It also featured the best produce from local farms as farmers and individuals alike competed for first place with their harvest.  Baking and preserves were judged, and inside other buildings were competitions of a more artistic nature.

people viewing photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

For many years, we would painstakingly pass through the aisles of entries for the photo competition silently judging the photos ourselves.  By the time 2006 rolled around, our family was beyond admiring the entries because we, too, had submitted photos to be judged.

midway rides, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2003

Our set routine held fast.  We toured the livestock barns and poultry house first thing in the morning.  A pass through the Midway preceded going into those buildings housing the Homecraft Exhibits and General Exhibits.  It was intentional to delay seeing the results of our entries into the various competitions.  With anticipation building, I could hardly contain myself.

a winner in the photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

Unable to wait any longer, we would make a beeline to the appropriate areas to see if we had placed.  Although it required a little extra effort on my part, I encouraged our daughter to submit photos into a few different categories.  She was unable to deliver the photos to the fairgrounds or pick them up when the Fair was over.

a winning entry in the photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

Always having an eye for composition and photography, our daughter’s photo took first place in the category Photographer’s Choice.

a winning entry in the art competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

Not to be outdone by his sister, our youngest son had entered a black-and-white sketch into an art category for his age group.

a winning entry in the art competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

We were all so excited to find that he had taken first place and also was awarded Best in Show for his sketch, an honour bestowed on him by The Markham Group of Artists.

a winning entry in the art competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

Our son’s entries did not end there.  Having taught himself well, our son had become adept at Computer Generated Art, and his entry took first place for that, as well.

candy apples for sale, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2009

To prolong the anticipation of discovering the results, our family would often force itself to walk away from the displays.  A pass through the busy Commercial Building was usually quite quick, and it only took a few minutes to procure some fudge or a candy apple.

people eating candy apples, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2009

Whatever happened to the standard candy apple finished in a glossy, crunchy red-sugar coating?  So much more appealing in my eyes with that delectable contrast between sweet and tart.  Now the options are endless.

winning entries in carving, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

Then it would be right back to the General Exhibits to see how the next member of our family fared.  Bob took up carving back in early 2000, and already his carvings were gaining some recognition.

carving competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2006

His first entry seemed appropriate to the venue when his Wild Boar took second place.

winner's list, carving competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

On top of the judges awarding first through fifth place in the competitions, there were certain special awards sponsored by different groups and individuals.

a winner, carving competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

Bob was honoured in 2012 with a Tom Rimmer Memorial Award and first place for a Bowhead Whale that he carved.

carving competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

Bob was inspired to carve this particular subject after having spent some time in Canada’s Arctic the previous summer filming a documentary about Bowhead Whales.

winner's list, photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

Bob’s talents were not only for carving.  He was pretty handy with a camera too, as his first place win in Relics of Yesteryear attested to.

entry in the photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

When we were out and about, Bob and I always hunted for potential objects to photograph that would meet the criteria of categories in the photography competition.  Markham Fair had many to choose from.

funny person, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2010

Markham Fair always encouraged visitors to take photos at the Fair to enter into the following year’s competition.  Anything was fair game!

photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2011

We were good sports and entered this photo of me into the category Something Funny.

entry into art competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2007

For several years, our son took home first place with his entries into sketching and computer generated art.

entry into photography competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

I, too, held my own with countless photos submitted for judging in many different categories.  It was great fun to peruse the endless walls of photos looking for our own entries and the sheer surprise and delight if they placed.  Over the years, we must’ve spent a small fortune developing prints and mounting them for display, but it made the Markham Fair so much more enjoyable to have a vested interest in it.

a winner in the horticultural competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2008

In the years when my outdoor planters managed to escape frost, I would enter them into the Markham Fair competitions.  I started out slow with a third place win for a Mixed Outdoor Planter,

a winner in the horticultural competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2008

and even a third place for Any Other Foliage Plant Not in Bloom.  I was thrilled!

a winner in the horticultural competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2013

By 2013, I was getting the hang of it and took home First Place for Windowbox.

a winner in the horticultural competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2013

And my Tuberous Begonias also scored a red ribbon.  I was over the moon!

entries in the baking competition, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

Of course, those were not the only competitions that demanded some of our attention.  An acquaintance who is a phenomenal baker took home many prizes for her entries.

giant sunflower, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2012

It was always surprising to see the size of giant pumpkins, huge sunflowers, hefty potatoes, sheafs of wheat, and so much more.

Entries to be judged included flower arrangements, crafts, knitting, quilting.  There is something for everyone to appreciate and enjoy.

food vendor, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2005

Exhausted from being on our feet for hours and on a high because of our wins, we were deserving of a special treat.

donuts, doughnuts, markham fair, markham, ontario, 2007

All the marvelous baked goods in the baking competitions certainly piqued my sweet tooth.  Fresh warm donuts to the rescue.  Who could resist?  Markham Fair is set to return after the Pandemic ends on Sept. 30, Oct. 1,2, & 3 in 2021. Hope to see you there!

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