“Show Your Sparks” Exhibits at the Washington County Fair

2024 Washington County 4-H Exhibit Requirements and Guidelines for Washington County Fair

All Washington County youth between the ages of 5 and 18 are welcome!

Washington County Fair: August 24 & 25, 2024, Pembroke Fair Grounds

  • Drop-off: Friday, August 23, 2024 9:00 a.m. to Noon at fairgrounds or dropped off at the UMaine Cooperative Extension in Machias by 4:00 p.m., Thursday, August 22
  • Judging: Friday, August 23, 2024 1:00-5:00 p.m.
  • Pick- Up: Sunday, August 25, 2024 from 2-3:00 p.m. at the fairgrounds

Exhibits must include a completed exhibit card attached with the exhibit (cards are available from the Washington County Cooperative Extension Office). Exhibits must remain until pick up on Sunday, August 25th at 2:00 p.m. 

“Show Your Sparks” Exhibit Entry Guidelines

  1. Entries in the “Show Your Sparks” Exhibit are open to enrolled Washington County 4-H members.  4-H youth must be re-enrolled by December 31st of each subsequent year to participate in future exhibits with the Washington County Fair.  Not a current member?  You can enroll in 4-H when you register your exhibit! 
  2. Pre-register with the Extension office with intent to submit entry into the 4-H exhibit by completing the online registration form or by contacting the office at 207.255.3345 or emailing extension.washington@maine.edu by Friday, August 16, 2024. 
  3. Exhibits must be produced and/or prepared by the 4-H member during the current October 2023 – September 2024 4-H year. Clubs may work together on projects, but individual members are responsible for producing their own entry for the 4-H Individual Exhibits.  
  4. Each 4-H youth can enter a maximum of five entries. 
  5. Maine 4-H uses the Danish System of non-competitive judging. All entries are judged based on how well it displays the appropriate skills for member age and skill level, except for Cloverbuds (see guideline 6). Entries are not judged against each other. A judge’s decision is final. 
  6. University of Maine 4-H Cloverbud Policy states exhibitors ages 5-8 will receive an honorarium and a Cloverbud Ribbon. Cloverbuds are considered beginner level and all Cloverbud entries are submitted for non-competitive display only. 
  7.  There will be one “Best of Show” Ribbon awarded for each “Show Your Sparks” 4-H Exhibit category. 
  8. UMaine Cooperative Extension/4-H and the Washington County Fair distinctly disclaim any liability for loss or damage to exhibits. We will afford the best protection possible for exhibits, but please be aware that there is no security at the 4-H Garden Exhibit.

Civic Engagement/Community Service

Any labeled poster, model, or display that illustrates a project or experience in civic engagement and/or community service OR the importance of civic engagement and/or community service (such as importance of voting, roadside clean ups, etc).

Conservation/Natural Resources

Any labeled poster, model, or display that illustrates the practice of conserving a resource (such as recycling project, logging, water quality, etc). Must include an explanation of the conservation practice and/or ecological issue.


  1. Textiles (such as Knit, Crochet, Embroidery, Macrame, Rug, Quilt, Weaving, Spinning, Felting, String Art, Fabric Painting, etc)
  2. Canvas (such as Papermaking, Paper Mache, Origami, Scrapbooking, Bookbinding, Decoupage, Cardmaking, etc)
  3. Wood, Metal, Glass, Stone (such as Woodcarving, Woodturning, Woodburning, Metalwork, Stained glass, Glassblowing, Pebble art, etc)
  4. Ceramics (such as Pottery, Sculpture, etc)
  5. Recycled Art (An item made from discarded materials that once had another purpose and would have otherwise been thrown away)
  6. Leathercraft
  7. Jewelry
  8. Other (such as Basketmaking, Candlemaking, Egg Decorating, Soapmaking, etc)

Food Preservation

Canned: 1-3 jars of either vegetable, fruit, jam, jelly, pickles, or conserves.
Dried: 1-3 samples of dried fruit, vegetable, or meat (can be smoked).


Vegetables: Vegetables should be brushed clean (do not wash), trimmed, and fresh. Display vegetables on a plate and include the name of the variety/type for the display. 

  1. Vegetables grown in heads (1 specimen): cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, etc.
  2. Small vine crops (10 specimens): beans, peas, etc.
  3. Large vine crops (1 specimen): cucumbers, pumpkins, squash, gourds, etc.
  4. Root crops (3 specimens): potatoes, carrots, beets, onion, turnips, etc.
  5. Other (1-3 specimens): corn, peppers, eggplants, tomatoes (may be green), etc.
  6. Family Garden collection of 3 or more vegetables in a basket or special container.

Flowers: Vase of cut flowers, corsage or in foam from flower garden.

Herbs: Five stems of a single or multiple herbs arranged in a container. Include the name(s) of the variety/type of herb for the display.

Indoor Gardening: A display of indoor plants such as a potted houseplant, dish garden or terrarium, dried flower arrangement, indoor vegetable/herb garden, etc.


Any labeled poster, model, or display that illustrates a project or experience in Leadership (such as National 4-H Trip, National 4-H Summit, Leadership in your Clubwork, Leadership at Eastern States Exposition, etc). Must include an explanation of the leadership activity, member’s role, and the results of the experience.

Club Exhibit

The purpose of this 4-H Club Exhibit is to tell the public about your club purpose, projects, interests, and/or activities. The exhibit should incorporate the fair theme “Show Your Sparks”. The criteria for judging the 4-H Club Exhibits are:

Theme: Exhibit reflects the 4-H theme of the Washington County Fair.
Appearance: Exhibit is neat, well-organized, easy to understand, easy to see at a distance.
Originality: Exhibit shows creativity and originality.
Spelling/Grammar: Exhibit displays correct spelling, grammar, etc.
Branding: Exhibit displays correct use of the 4-H Clover logo, the UMaine Extension/4-H combined logo, 4-H (including the “-” between 4 and H), mottos, etc, if they are used in the display. Consult the Extension Office for Branding Guidelines.
Club Work: Exhibit highlights the club’s purpose, projects, interests, and/or activities and it also helps the public to understand the goals and philosophy of 4-H and your specific club.
Participation: Exhibit shows evidence of 4-H member involvement in the club.

Fair Ribbons and Premiums

Ribbons: In Maine 4-H, ribbons traditionally awarded by the Danish system are:

  • Blue: for excellence, exceeding the standards
  • Red: for good work that meets the expected standard
  • White: for work that falls below the expected standard
  • Green: Cloverbuds (ages 5-8)


  • Blue Ribbon: $5
  • Red Ribbon: $4
  • White Ribbon: $3
  • Cloverbuds: $2 honorarium