The DC State Fair is an agricultural, culinary, and artistic showcase of the District. Our main event will take place on September 20th, from 12 to 7pm at Old City Farm & Guild, with a full day of competitions and other fun and educational activities for all ages. You can join us for other events throughout the year, as well. Click here to find out more about this year’s fair.
How did this come about? DC is home to gardeners, cooks, bakers, photographers, artists–and yet we didn’t have a state fair to celebrate the home-grown talents of the District. In 2010, that all changed: The first-ever DC State Fair was held on August 28 of that year at the Columbia Heights Day festival. The Fair later was held at the Barracks Row Fall Festival.
DC State Fair is returning this year for another celebration of DC community talent! Sign up to get the latest news, contest rules, and volunteer opportunities.
DC State Fair is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization.
The DC State Fair Board of Directors
Torrance E. Anderson
Torrance E. Anderson has a 25-year background in fine food and service. He is a lifelong resident of the DMV. His passion for cooking, baking, and hospitality has made him a mentor to many in his professional and personal networks. Torrance has traveled extensively around the world and he practices Nichiren Buddhism and Bikram Yoga. Torrance is a consultant for a culinary think tank, and he bakes professionally at Union Kitchen in NoMA. He lives in Foxhall Village in NW where he enjoys grilling and entertaining for family and friends.
A fourth generation native of the area, Eric Firnhaber has been passionate about every aspect of food for over a decade. From experiments with permaculture and aquaponics, organic farming in both urban and rural settings, to made-from-scratch culinary endeavors (as long as it’s spicy), he now works in communications for an international agricultural development agency on market development projects around the world. With his experience on both sides of a farmer’s market, Eric is excited to help showcase DC’s diverse, homegrown talent.
Hailing from Bethesda, MD, Abby moved into Washington DC three years ago and has loved it ever since. She has always had a passion for food and cooking, and most recently has delved into agriculture. Her diverse work experience has been focused on improving the food system: from working on an urban farm and at a soup kitchen, to working in the nonprofit world with food hubs, sustainable food enterprises and in international agricultural development. Abby’s current position is in outreach and communications at a government agricultural grantmaking program.
Christine has been living in the District since 2010 after working her way down I-95 from her hometown outside Baltimore, Maryland. She loves her neighborhood in Southwest, despite her inability to transition her loyalty from the Orioles to the Nationals. After admiring Maryland State Fair blue ribbons every summer growing up, Christine decided to give competitive baking a shot. In 2011, she won second place in the Makes-Me-Wanna Shout! Coconut Cake Baking Challenge. In 2013, she took the title of “Best Pie Crust” in the DC State Fair.
By day, Christine is a lawyer, working on Medicare policy issues for a national medical society. She hopes to one day combine her love of baking and bad puns into Torte Appeal, and be able to share some of her favorite treats with others in the DC area.
Kim moved into the District in 2011 from Alexandria where she lived for 23 years. In Alexandria, she served on the planning committee for Art on the Avenue, the city’s largest, one-day art and music festival. Kim is currently employed by Cultural Tourism DC. She was previously the Director of Operations for Northern Virginia AIDS Ministry (NOVAM). Growing up in Western New York, Kim loved attending the Erie County Fair every year. The State Fair offers her the opportunity to put years of volunteer and nonprofit management to good use.
Amelia Showalter is a board member and original co-founder of the DC State Fair. In 2009 when Amelia went all the way out to the Virginia suburbs to enter her homegrown tomatoes in a contest, she blogged about how D.C. needed a fair of its own. She and two other bloggers launched the first DC State Fair in 2010. Amelia loves gardening at the Newark Street Community Garden and shopping at the Dupont Circle Farmer’s Market. She is the former Director of Digital Analytics at President Obama’s re-election campaign, and now works as a freelance political consultant. She has lived in D.C. off and on for eight years.
As the National Restaurant Association’s manager of digital innovation, Anna Tauzin leads digital strategy development, business and entrepreneurial products, and start-up business development. Her interests include how restaurateurs and businesses engage with customers in new, innovative ways, including via social media and mobile applications. In particular, she loves learning about new start-ups in the restaurant tech space. Previously, Anna was the web and social media editor for J-Lab, a nonprofit journalism research center in Washington, D.C.
Anna serves on the advisory board for SXSW Interactive, a huge conference focused on emerging technology, and is an regular volunteer for Miriam’s Kitchen. Additionally, she is active in the restaurant technology communities.
(updated March 2014)