Mental Floss

The Quick 10: 10 Bizarre Contests at the Iowa State Fair

Stacy Conradt

It's that time of year again"¦ State Fair time. I know; I'm overdosing you guys on Iowa today, what with the Iowa-80 truck stop and everything. But I think you'll find strange and interesting contests at all state fairs, not just the Iowa State Fair. So this is just to make you think about what odd competitions you could enter at your own fair this summer.

10 Bizarre Competitions at the Iowa State Fair

1. Outhouse Races. This is exactly what it sounds like a "pilot" in an outhouse, running for a finish line (no wheels, people). My favorite rule: Outhouses must weigh at least 200 pounds unoccupied. If outhouse fails to make the weight limit, 50 lb bags of steer manure will be provided to help you make the weight limit.
2. Mullet Contest. Sponsored by the Iowa School of Beauty, prizes go to those who have the top two female and top two male mullets. If you've ever been to the state fair, you know there is no shortage of mullets.
3. The Senior Spelldown. It's a spelling bee for people ages 60 and over, sponsored by the AARP. Go figure.
4. Beard Growing Contest. It's really a beard measuring contest, as I don't think contestants are actually judged on how much they grow while at the fair. I could be wrong. It wouldn't be the weirdest thing at the fair.
5. Rubber Chicken Throwing Contest. Better than real chickens, I suppose.
6. 21st Annual Best Grocery Bagger Contest.. Paper? Plastic? Both? Neither?
7. Weed Identification Contest. I have to assume this is more along the lines of, "Dandelion, ragweed, Creeping Charlie," and not "Maui Wowie, MILF Weed, Super Skunk."
8. Cow Chip Throwing. Real cow chips. Not rubber ones. For those of you not familiar with cow chips, they are also called cow pies. If that doesn't help, well, imagine the size of the excrement that comes out of cows. It's pretty big. And it usually gets stepped on, which flattens it out. Then it dries in the sun of the pasture, and, voila! Cow chip.
9. Husband Calling Contest. From what I understand, you're more likely to hear, "Hey, dumbass!" than "Honey, can you come here?"
10. Ladies' Nail Driving Contest. I feel like I should be insulted by this one. They probably give them pink hammers.