It was a battle for the ages between the Rochester Hospital Auxiliary, Catholic Women’s League and the many local CWAs in the cookery contests, all taking home at least one blue ribbon.
Champion Cake in Show went to Judith White for her outstanding boiled fruit cake and Best Exhibit was also claimed by Judith for her fruit loaf bread.
Judith also earned first place in the four lamingtons, four pieces shortbread, raspberry shortbread slice, four joined Yo-Yos and eight other contests — hopefully someone can bring the fight to this dominant chef next year.
A possible contender could be Zowie Crump, who won first place in the ginger fluff, sponge sandwich and chocolate sandwich competitions.
Best Exhibits in the 14-18-year-old, 13-10-year-old and under-nine categories went to Jude Mussared for her novelty decorated cake, Natalie Moon for her patty cakes and Charles Watson for his decorated wooden spoon respectively.
The pickles and preserves section was dominated by Heather Watson, who placed in almost every category.
Bev Burgess won Best Exhibit in sewing, knitting/crochet and novelty craft for her child’s garment, dressed doll with knitted clothing and dressed toy respectively.
In embroidery Best Exhibit was claimed by Sue Cox for an article of counted cross stitch — 50cm or larger.
Patchwork’s Best Exhibit went to Kaye Clarke for a large commercially quilted custom.
In woodwork and metalwork Greg Emmerson took first place with his woodwork.
Charles Watson won Best Exhibit in children’s craft (12 years and under) for a woodwork piece.
Similarly, Hugh Acocks won Best Exhibit in the eight-and-under section for woodwork.
Now for the big one: Horticulture, featuring all kinds of roses, geraniums and even kangaroo paws.
Best Exhibit went very classically to the rose contests, with Heather Watson pulling off a miracle and beating Judith White — if only we could get Heather to pick up the oven mitts.
In pot plants Sharon Herne proved she knows what's what, winning in the foliage pot plant, one succulent, and one miniature cactus or succulent garden contests.
In floral art Best Exhibit went to Wendy Anderson for her flair with foliage entry.
A special mention to Janine Hocking who beat out ... herself ... in the arrangement forming a wreath competition. Sometimes you’ve got to be your own enemy.
In the juniors Best Exhibit went to Jasmine Watson for her collection of six different seed pods.
In fruit and vegetable it was the year of the rockmelon after Bob Lea took home Best Exhibit for his outstanding melon.
In farm produce (mainly featuring hay and hen eggs) Merryn Murray, Anthony Lees and the Macague Family were often neck and neck.
In the end Anthony got the highest aggregation of points.
In art Best Exhibit in the open age group was won by Greta Zegelin for her medium portrait.
Other Best Art Exhibits went to Ryllie Edwards in the Under 18s, Cara Haley in Under 13s and Madison Walkley in Under 8s.
In photography Faye Moon, Janelle McDonald, Charles Watson and Grace Hewlett all took out the Best Exhibits in their disciplines while Lucy Nelson and Heather Watson scored two Best Exhibits.
In the Lego and other construction of brick category Best Construction went to Darcy Knowles-Mulholland who submitted a piece in the 5-7-year-old competition.
A second Best Exhibit went to Charles Watson for his model made from Meccano.
The overall most successful exhibitor in the Homecrafts Sections, awarded in memory of Alice Lloyd, went to Heather Watson.
Well done all.