Public Info

Harvest Contest Celebrates Union County’s Best

Photo Caption (photo attached):Virginia Pendergast of Clark (center), shown here with Union County Freeholder Daniel P. Sullivan and Madeline Dinardo of the Rutgers Cooperative Extension, displays her winning entry in the Heaviest Tomato category at the Union County Fair Harvest Contest last year. For information on entering this year’s contest in September call the Extension at 908-654-9854, or follow the Events link at (Photo: Jim Lowney/County of Union)

Union County, NJ – New Jersey tomatoes can reach epic proportions and the Union County Freeholder Board is inviting home gardening enthusiasts to show off their best efforts in the second annual Harvest Contest at the Union County Fair this fall. The biggest tomato will be just one of the prizewinners in several Harvest Contest categories, including a new Quick Bread category.

The Union County Fair features a full scale carnival, free MusicFest concerts, food and craft vendors, and much more. It takes place from Wednesday September 14 through Sunday September 18 at Oak Ridge Park in Clark.

“Our Union County gardeners – and bakers – help to remind us that good nutrition begins with fresh foods and home cooked meals,” said Freeholder Chairman Deborah Scanlon. “The Harvest Contest is our way of recognizing and appreciating their contributions to a healthy community.”


The Harvest Contest is sponsored by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County, supported in part by the Freeholder Board.

The vegetable categories are heaviest tomato, heaviest zucchini, funniest looking undecorated vegetable, best character made from vegetables, and best pumpkin. All vegetables must be grown by the contestant.

On Saturday, visitors to the County Fair are invited to vote for the “People’s Choice Awards” for the funniest looking vegetable and the best vegetable character.

Harvest Contest entrants and all visitors to the County Fair are also invited to enter for a chance to win a free rain barrel valued at $100, sponsored by Rutgers Cooperative Extension.

Quick Bread entries will be judged on seven points including looks, texture, and flavor.

All gardening and baking contestants receive a participation ribbon. Prizes will be awarded to first, second and third place entries.

For complete Harvest Contest details including drop-off, judging, and pickup times, call RCE of Union County at 908-654-9854 for a free Harvest Contest brochure. To view the brochure online visit and follow the Events link to the Harvest Contest.

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Rutgers Cooperative Extension is an equal opportunity program provider and employer. Contact your local Extension Office for information regarding special needs or accommodations. Contact the State Extension Director’s Office if you have concerns related to discrimination, 732-932-5000, ext. 584

For more information on any Union County press release, please contact Sebastian D’Elia, Communications Director for the County of Union, or a designee listed at the top of this press release.   Please join the County of Union online at, on Facebook at, and on Twitter at

Tina Casey
Deputy Director
Union County Office of Public Information