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Fair streamlines registration process

Attention all those who plan to enter exhibits in the open class division of the Douglas County Fair this summer. A new option is available to make the process faster and more convenient: Register online.

That option became available on the fair's website — — on July 1.

The Douglas County Fair is partnering with Blue Ribbon Fair to streamline the process.

"In the past, people had to bundle everything up, bring it to the fair, stand in line and then register," said Kevin Brezina, Douglas County Fair Board treasurer. "By moving the open class registration online, people have the option to register in advance and speed up the process.

Brezina said the new option can be completed in just a few easy steps:

• Go to and click on the Online Registration link. You will need a valid email address to complete your registration process online.

• If this is your first time registering online, set aside 15-20 minutes to register yourself and your exhibits.

• Read the directions on the screen, they will guide you through the process.

• If you miss registering for an exhibit, you are welcome to log back in at any time and add items.

• Exhibitors who use the online registration process will reduce the their registration and entry time at the fairgrounds on entry day up to 50 percent.

• Once you pre-register, your entry cards will be waiting for you at the fair.

Brezina added that those entering the open class should review the premium book and jot down or circle the Division, Class and Lot of the item they wish to enter. The premium book is online at

When complete, make sure you review your entries and check out. There is no cost for registration; the checkout only confirms your entries, Brezina explained. He also said that people can register online now from their home.

"We really encourage people to advance register," he said. "We want to make sure the registration process goes as smoothly and quickly as possible."

The open class typically draws between 300-400 people who bring in 3,500 exhibits in a wide variety of categories, from cooking and horticulture to sewing and photography.

"It's everything from soup to nuts," said Brezina.

A new division, robotics, has been added this year. Brezina said there will be a Rube Goldberg machine contest where entrants will come up with crazy contraptions where one action triggers another, kind of like the Mouse Trap board game.

Another new twist to this year's open class exhibits is there will be live demonstrations from the Johnson Building stage on all four days of the fair covering a wide variety of topics — winemaking, decorating cakes, running a bee farm, designing floral arrangements, making homemade sauerkraut and more.

"There will lots of activity in the Johnson building this year," Brezina said.

Those with questions about the online registration process may email

Al Edenloff

Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  

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