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KNAU and Arizona News

Woman Has Entered Baking Competition At Arizona State Fair For Past 45 Years

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A retired Phoenix teacher is entering the Arizona State Fair culinary competition in multiple categories for the 45th consecutive year.

Mary Jane McHenry says competing at the fair has become a special tradition. She tells The Arizona Republic she finds it calming and rewarding.

The baking enthusiast will load up her car Tuesday with at least eight entries, including focaccia made with rosemary from her garden. McHenry has noticed entries in the fair's culinary and homemaking categories have dwindled over the years.

Fair officials say they're trying to attract younger people with categories like cupcake decorating.

The Arizona State Fair opened Friday and runs through October 27.