ESCANABA - When the ladies who attended the Ladies Day event entered the big top at the U.P. State Fairgrounds Wednesday, many of the long-time attendees were a little surprised the usual table loaded with scores of goodie bags was replaced with a handful of women at the table passing out entry forms for the grand prize drawing instead.
But their consternation was short-lived after it was announced the popular bags issued annually by OSF St. Francis Hospital and containing the 2012 Ladies Day Cookbook would be distributed at the end of the program.
"That's one of the reasons I come here for Ladies Day," was the comment of more than one of the women in attendance.
But between the time they entered the tent and exited it almost two hours later, many of the women were all smiles as they carried out one of the dozens of prizes that were given away in drawings and giveaways that took place between each speaker and demonstration.
Master of ceremonies Mike Favor, WYKX-104 FM radio, joined forces with Menominee County Fair Queen Michalla Marks in drawing the names of each winner from a round cage. In addition to the glider rocker donated annually by E&E Furniture, one lucky woman took a brand new Kindle home with her. Other prizes ranged from paper bags filled with a selection of groceries from local supermarkets, certificates for free dinners, Taste of Home cookbooks, and other assorted goodies.
Donna Allsworth of Flat Rock was thrilled when she learned she was the winner of a large quilt made by Phyllis Theoret. When the smiling winner was informed that no self-respecting, serious quilter completed a quilt without making a deliberate flaw in the construction and it was up to her to find it, she retorted, "I don't even sew, so I wouldn't have any idea what to even look for! But it won't matter to me at all."
Guest speaker was Dr. Kim Johnson, DO, OSF Women's Health Center, who spoke about women's health issues and the ongoing upgrades that are being made at OSF St. Francis Hospital to improve the quality of patient care at the hospital and the Women's Health Center.
A representative from the Delta County YMCA put the ladies through their paces with an assortment of chair exercises they could do at home.
Another highlight of Ladies Day is the selection of the winners in the annual baking contest. The names of the winning cooks/bakers, along with their prize-winning recipes, will be published in the Top of the Morning section of the Daily Press on Saturday, Aug. 25.
Members of the Ladies Day Committee are Sandy Groleau, Sue McDonnell, Linda Bruce, Ada Knauf and Cheryl Swanson.