Tribute Beer Release Party

With our comrades at The Public Option, we are excited to announce the release of the DC State Fair tribute beer!

What does that mean?
For the DC State Fair Best Homebrew Contest, the winner of the Best in Show ribbon also receives the opportunity to have the grand folks at The Public Option brew a tribute beer in its honor. This is your best opportunity to try the prize-winning beer!

Our friends from Neat Meat DC will also be there serving up their (meat AND vegan) sloppy joes. You won’t want to miss this awesome event!

For more on the 2017 contest winners:

For more on the 2018 contests:

Let’s Be Terrific!

On Terrific Tuedays at BKK Thai Cookshop, they donate 10% of dine-in dinner sales to non-profits.

On Tuesday, June 26, Terrific Tuesday will benefit the DC State Fair. The DC State Fair is a free showcase of the District’s agricultural and creative talents and a daylong celebration of all things homegrown. The ninth annual DC State Fair will be held on Sunday, September 23, 2018, at Waterfront Station in Southwest DC.

Please join us at BKK Thai Cookshop for dinner on June 26 for delicious Thai cuisine benefitting a fantastic cause! It’s a great opportunity to meet the board and volunteers that make the event happen — and find out how you can participate and/or volunteer!

BKK Cookshop
1700 New Jersey Ave NW
Washington, DC 20001

Ninth Annual DC State Fair to Return to Southwest, Contests Announced

Sunday, September 23, Southwest Washington, D.C., will again host the DC State Fair at the Waterfront Station. The public is invited to enjoy the ninth annual free event.  Included in the program are the contests that crown the city’s best growers, crafters, and cooks; performances from local musicians and dance troupes; and food, art, and craft vendors showcasing and selling their wares.

Planning is underway for the full schedule of events, and updates will be provided in the coming months. Many contest entries for 2018 are already open, including the popular “Best Bud”, Honey, Wine, and Fiber Arts categories. New contests this year include Best Salsa, Best Biscuit, and Best Cookie, with more to come. The DC State Fair Board of Directors urges those interested in participating to plan ahead.

“We are excited to celebrate all the District has to offer, from homebrew to double dutch,” says Ashley Chaifetz, Contest Coordinator and member of the DC State Fair Board of Directors. “I look forward to participation by school gardens, as they are now able to enter the fruit and vegetable categories as a single unit. I hope they will save some of their harvest to enter this September!”

This daylong celebration of all things homegrown is unique among local fairs and festivals: it is run entirely by volunteers, is free to attend, and is held in different neighborhoods from year to year, making the Fair accessible to all DC residents and visitors. For the second year, the DC State Fair, in partnership with the Southwest Business Improvement District,  will take place at the Southwest Waterfront Metro.

The DC State Fair is also committed to working with local businesses and organizations that help our community thrive. Want to participate in the DC State Fair? Enter a contest, volunteer, or just show up on the big day! Learn more at

Press interested in covering the DC State Fair should complete a press credential request form. Questions? Contact us!

Seed Share

Get your green thumb and garden beds ready for the seventh annual DC State Fair with a Seed Share on Saturday, May 21! Gardeners will be at Eastern Market (225 7th St. SE) between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to give away free seeds of all sorts (including flowers, vegetables and cannabis) and to answer all your gardening questions.  

DC State Fair Seed Share 3

Image by Oregon Department of Agriculture/Flickr

Final day to apply for the Board!

The deadline to apply for the DC State Fair Board of Directors is TODAY! Submit your application by midnight to join our creative, fun, and hardworking volunteer team. It’s a great opportunity to hone those leadership skills and get to know your community.

Find everything you need to know about the position and the DC State Fair itself, and feel free to email with questions.

To apply, please e-mail your resume, a letter of intent, and, if you’d like, one or two supporting documents (e.g. a recommendation letter, documentation of your community involvement, a poetic ode to the Fair) to info[at]

There are still seeds for your library at the library.

Thank you to D.C. Public Library Librarian David Quick for this guest post.

Mia Hayes-Hawkins demonstrates seed-saving techniques. Photos by Danita Delaney.
Above and below, right: Mia Hayes-Hawkins demonstrates seed-saving techniques. Photos by Danita Delaney.

Here at the Southeast Library, we had great fun hosting Fair-related programs. Leading up to the fair, we helped competitors write poetry and plan their bike accessories. And on the day of the fair, there were seed savers and solar cookers gathered in our garden learning new skills. In fact, we still have a bunch of seeds leftover from the swap that followed demonstration.

Sweet Plant Nation Seed Saving TalkSo if you’re still planning out next year’s garden, stop by the library or email me. We have a beautiful mix of seeds here that you can peruse while browsing the latest novels.

What goes into a blue ribbon pie?

Ever wondered what goes into those mouth-watering pies that bear the DC State Fair blue ribbon? The website of the Makes-me-wanna SHOUT! Pie Baking Challenge recently revealed just that. Profiling both the person and the recipe, the post on Sharon Winget’s Chalfant Apple Cranberry Pie is not to be missed.

Read Sharon Winget’s Chalfant Apple Cranberry Pie Wins Blue Ribbons at the 2013 DC State Fair Pie Contest.

The winners!

Everyone wins at the DC State Fair. Anyone who entered a pie competition for the first time or snapped a sweet picture at our photo booth knows that! But of course we also have contest winners. So without further ado, here they are.

If in the rush of the Fair we missed or miscategorized anything, please let us know.


1.   Early Morning Fishing, ekelly80

2.   Hear, Capitol Quarter Photos

3.   Concentration, ekelly80


1.   Sean Gugger: Nelson RyePA

2.   Nathan Rice: Peach Sour

Best Malt: Brian Haroldson: Hookie Dark Cream Ale

Best Fruit & Spice: Paul Stepnowsky: Baby Blues

Best Roast/Smoke/Wood: Rob Pitingolo: Pennsylvania Ave Porter


Best of Show: Izzy Hill

Extracted Honey: Izzy Hill

Best Tasting Honey: Franciscan Monastery Garden Guild

Kids’ Poetry:

Darren Hazzard, “Good Food, the More You Eat the Better You Feel”

Craft Contests

Newborn Hats:

1.   Karla Koudelka, Cupcake

2.   Karla Koudelka, Pumpkin

3.   Kenneth Moore, Pumpkin


First Place Knit: Whitney Meagher, DC Themed Gloves

First Place Crochet: Karla Koudelka, Cat Sweater

Bicycle Accessory:

1st place and Best Design & Function: Crispen Wilson, Quick Attach and remove child seat for Capitol BikeShare

2nd place and Best Adaptation: Jamal Kadri, 1934 rear steer tandem retrofit

3rd place and Most Creative: Nthabi Rand, Doll carrier

Kids’ Art:

1.    Nthabi Rand

Baked Goods Contests


Best in Show: Sharon Winget, Chalfont Apple Cranberry Pie

Best Apple:  Chalfant Mother’s Apple Cranberry Pie by Sharon E. Winget

Best Pie Crust:  Salty Oat Apple Pie by Christine Perez

Savory Show: Mushroom Lambkin Pie by Ellen McBarnette


1st Place: Tatiana Cook, Red Pepper Cupcake with Goat Cheese Frosting and Red Pepper Jam

Best Cake: Joy Dingle, Chocolate-Almond Cupcake with Almond Meringue Icing

Best Presentation: Kimberley Trainor, Coconut Ginger Cake, Lemon Curd Filling, and Meringue Frosting.

Prepared Foods Contests

Cucumber Pickle:

1. Mark Perry

2. Melanie Egorin

3. Chris Forney

Other Vegetable Pickle:

1. Margaret Mook, Green Martini Tomatoes

2. Kara Elder, Sweet Pickled Jalapenos with Coriander and Cumin

3. (tie) Kara Elder, Sweet Pickled Jalapenos with Ginger;  Mike Hankey, Cilantro Pickled Radishes

Fruit Pickle:

Chris Forney, Mom’s Watermelon Pickles

Jam & Jelly:

1.   Erin Behrmann, Smoky Peach Pepper Jam

2.   Erin Behrmann, Peach Basil Jam

3.   Sarah Cohen, Spicy Raspberry Lime Jam

Fermented Vegetable:

Rhea Kennedy, Locavore Kimchi

Vegetable Contests

Tastiest Tomato:

Malin Moeller, Cherry Tomato

Longest Vegetable:

Stephanie Dock, 46-inch squash

Heaviest Vegetable:

Jesse Fenty, 18-pound pumpkin

Heaviest Fruit:

Ellen McBarnette,  watermelon

Funkiest-Looking Vegetable:

Andrew Robie, Maize