MUUniversity of Missouri-Columbia


Missouri 4-H
4-H Center for Youth Development


4-H Home

State Fair website

Building Information

Building Guidelines

Displaying Photos (PDF)

Exhibit Guidelines

Demonstration Guidelines

Demonstration Schedule (PDF)

Fair information Letter & Demonstration form

(located in Just for Staff)


Show Me Wares

Livestock & Horse Information

Animal Health Requirements

Barrow Derby Show

DNA Card Information

Horse Show Bill

Livestock Catalog

Scrapie Information

Summary Form for nose print cards – optional (Word)


Missouri State Fair


August 7 to 17, 2014


Building Guidelines



4-H Building Showcase


Missouri 4‑H Center for Youth Development is under the direction of University of Missouri Extension.


“Learning by Doing” is the basis of 4‑H work, and each year thousands of young Missourians between the ages of 8 and 18 do just that.  4‑H members make the items displayed in the Missouri State Fair 4‑H Building.  The Missouri State Fair provides a showcase for the skills and knowledge that members have gained through their 4‑H experiences.


Items in the building are not judged.  They have been selected as champions from their county.


Besides developing practical skills and knowledge, 4‑H’ers are developing “life skills.”  Under the leadership of more than 9,000 adult volunteers, 4‑H members learn to make sound decisions, work cooperatively in groups and develop a sense of self-worth and accomplishment.  4-H also fosters leadership, as older youth share their talents with younger 4‑H’ers.


We salute all Missouri 4‑H members, volunteers and families, and particularly those whose “learning by doing” experiences are represented at the 2014 Missouri State Fair.


Note:  All items in the 4­H Building have been judged as county champions.  Items are not re-judged at the State Fair.


Showcase Guidelines


1.     Items made by 4‑H members should reflect the skills they have learned in their 4‑H project, the needs and interests of the 4‑H'er, and quality workmanship.  Use the 4‑H project literature and the "Clover" for ideas and criteria.


2.     Items displayed must:

·         Be made in the current year

·         Be the work of the 4-H members

·         4‑H member must be enrolled in the project


3.     Items must be of blue-ribbon quality.


4.     Items are displayed at the risk of the 4‑H member.  The 4‑H staff, Extension Centers, and Missouri State Fair are not responsible for loss or damage to items.


5.     A member is limited to two items in the 4‑H Building and one demonstration in the 4‑H division. 


6.     All 4‑H Building items must be registered either on the Missouri State Fair Voucher Computer Program or on the Fair Computation Program report.  This report is made at each county extension office.


7.     The following items will be displayed in special areas that allows fair goers to touch and examine the items.  4‑H’ers name and address should be permanently affixed to item.

·         Notebooks (three-ring binders are preferred) – name and county on spine

·         Posters (flat only; do not fasten items to the poster.) – name and address on back

·         File card systems


These items will be accepted from any project.  Youths who show notebooks, posters, or file card systems should understand that their exhibits will be handled.


8.   Where the item list states, "any item made," the 4‑H member may display any item made in that project.  This includes notebooks, file cards, photo displays, posters, or educational displays.  Be sure to clearly mark the exhibit tag with project number and description.


9.   Because of display space, available cases and number of exhibits in certain projects, dimension criteria is specified.  Items, which do not comply with size or other specifications, will not be displayed or receive a ribbon.  No posters, pictures, notebooks or patterns attached to projects.  Scrapbooks made in projects other than class 315 will be displayed in the Library or with other exhibits.


      Poster - No larger than 14" x 22"; flat only; do not fasten items to the poster.


Photo Display 


1.     Photos must be mounted on an 8"x 10" solid mounting surface.

2.     The mounting surface should be mat board, in a color of the photographer’s choice.

3.     Photographs must be 8"x 10" or smaller, with no more than four photos per mat board.


¯  "Solid" requires that these are no cutouts or other holes in the mat board, either around or behind the photo. Mount photos on the smoothest side of the mat board.

¯  "Mat board" is a specific material, intended to keep the photo from getting bent or destroyed. It is not cardboard, foam core, poster board, etc.-Mat board may be easily purchased from online retailers if local sources are not available.

-Examples of online retailers that sell 8" x 10" mat board include Sears, Golden State Art, Redimat, Etsy and several others which can be found via

¯  If you’re uncertain whether it’s mat board, do the “wave it and squeeze it” test: Mat board is not squishy or flimsy. If it isn’t light, then, stiff, and solid, the material is not mat board. Mounting material meeting this test will be given the benefit of the doubt.

-Single window mats (“frames” made of mat board and sized 8” x 10”) are acceptable but not required.


Techniques that can be performed in –camera, in a photo editing software program, or in a film darkroom are permissible. At State Fair, the line is drawn between “enhancing” and “altering” a photo:

1.     Altering (editing to change the contents of a photo) is not permitted for State Fair exhibits.

a.     Examples include adding a sunset or object, removing someone from the shot, airbrushing to cover a bad complexion, etc.

2.     Enhancing (editing to enhance the existing qualities of a photo) is permitted.

a.     Examples include cropping, dodging, burning, brightness/contrast adjustments and red eye reduction.


¯  Photo exhibits should arrive in a "zip-lock style" bag that fits the photo, to protect it from dust, humidity, and handling. The bag should not be oversized and folded, as this makes it difficult to display on the rack.

¯  Include name, address and county on the back of each photo.

State Fair 4-H photography exhibit guidelines are available online, at


Educational Display –Educational displays should not exceed 18” in height, 6” in depth and 12” in width.  Must include three-dimensional items and stand-alone.  (Posters with items taped to them do not qualify as an educational display.  Science fair display boards are too large.)


Entomology or Geology Display Boxes - Box must be no more than 18" long x 24" wide and 3 1/2" deep to fit in display racks.   Plexiglas or plastic covers are preferred.  No handles or knobs.  Boxes will be displayed upright in racks.


Scrapbooking exhibits should be only 1 page1 side representative of the complete scrapbook.

·         Size not to exceed 12” x 12”.

·         All pages should be in clear protective sleeve or clear zipper bag.  Do not frame.

·         If more than one page is submitted for an exhibit, the exhibit will be disqualified.


Working Models - These exhibits should show how things actually work (cutaway-sections of motors or computers) or can be used to help people identify parts such as parts of a motor or computer.  Many times these exhibits are considered “hands-on” and can be handled by visitors.  Working models should require floor space no larger than 14” x 22”x30”.


Decorated Cakes - The use of forms or pans is recommended.  Cakes should not exceed 13” in height or at the base.  Cake boards should not exceed 1” margin on each side of cake pan or form and is considered in the 13” base requirements.  We ask exhibitors to adhere to the 1” cake board margin, regardless of the shape of the cake, to help us display more cakes within our limited building space. Must only use Royal Icing, Rolled Fondant or commercial product that will harden and preserve the decorated cake. (No real cakes, Butter crème icing or tube/gel icing - displays containing these items will be considered ineligible and will be rejected.)


Cakes with candy decorations are allowed; however, avoid using candy that melts (e.g., M & Ms, candy canes, etc.). Cakes that have melting items will be removed from display.  No more than  six (6) per county.


10. Perishable items such as food, vegetables, crops and home grounds items will not be returned after the Fair.  Edible vegetables will be donated to a charitable organization.  these items are displayed in group settings not as individual projects.


11. Photographs of items too large or fragile:  This category is restricted to: large items such as welding project or large woodworking items like furniture; fragile items such as delicate ceramic work.  It is not intended as a substitute category for bringing or mailing projects.  All pictures of projects should not exceed 5” x 7”. Pictures should not be mounted on anything, and should not have multiple pictures.  Counties should send pictures individually rather than making a poster board of all the pictures.  The tag should be attached.  Indicate on the voucher that this is a project too large or fragile to come and what the project is.  These photographs will not be returned.  Do not send pictures of items that would be disqualified if sent to the fair.


12. Any exhibits using batteries such as circuit boards or robots should not connect the wires to the battery rather the wires should be taped behind the battery.  Another option is to not attach a battery but indicate “battery goes here.”  This is to prevent potential fire hazards.


13. All 4-H Building items must be checked in and out of the 4‑H Building by State Fair 4‑H Personnel during established times.  (No exceptions will be made.)  No early removal or checkout of items is permitted.  Items, which are not properly checked in or out of the 4‑H Building, will not be awarded premium money and/or ribbons.


14. No outdoor exhibit space is available.  Please contact the State 4-H Office at 573-882-1441 prior to check-in for approval of large over-sized exhibits.  Determination of items to be showcased will be left to the discretion of the 4-H Building Superintendent based on available space and the safety of fair-goers.  Submitting photographs of these items is encouraged.  Ribbons will be awarded for the projects.


15. Shooting Sports exhibits should contain no live ammunition and arrow points should be removed.


16. All items must have a Missouri State Fair tag securely fastened in a place visible to fairgoers. Remove all county or regional ribbons. Two identification labels should be securely attached, sewn or safety pinned to each item, 1 on the outside/front of the item and a second one behind, underneath or inside (e.g., textile items such as clothing or knitted items). Multiple piece exhibits should be fully labeled and connected (Examples: jacket and skirt; rocket and rocket launcher). Ideally, each item is also numbered to prevent sets from being separated. Example: Each item in a 3 piece exhibit (e.g., "Clothing you buy" outfit) would be labeled, 1 of 3, 2 of 3, 3 of 3. Perishable items such as food, vegetable and crops should have exhibit tags in an envelope.


17. Counties who mail or ship their items to the State Fair should enclose one printed copy of the State Fair Exhibit List and a digital file on a storage device(e.g. CD, flash drive). Use sturdy boxes.  Do not ship cakes or items in glass containers.  All items must be properly tagged and ready for display.  Counties may ship no more than two boxes of items and must enclose CASH to cover the return shipping or mailing costs.


18. Hams and bacons will be dually enrolled in the Youth Class of the Country Ham and Bacon Class and may become eligible for sale if selected as Champion.  The 4‑H member is required to complete all Open Division entry forms which should accompany the project at check-in and pay the $5.00 entry fee and $2.00 processing fee which is required in the Agriculture Building.   Checks must be made payable to the "Missouri State Fair."  Only 4‑H hams and bacons should be checked in and out of the 4‑H Building.  Hams checked in through the 4-H Building will be displayed in the 4-H Building.  Exception:  Grand or Reserve Champion Hams.


State Fair Superintendents


Ben Gallup, state 4-H youth development specialist

Building Exhibits & Demonstrations

Tammy Gillespie, state 4-H youth development specialist


Contact Information

4-H Center for Youth Development



Last Revised 4/17/14


University of Missouri Extension

4-H Center for Youth Development

Copyright © Curators of the University of Missouri, all rights reserved
 DMCA and other copyright information
 Disability resources Statement of nondiscrimination
 E-mail comments