Oregon is one of my favorite places. Among the first things that come to mind when I think of the place are beer and wine - they make great examples of both there. And state fairs are all about showcasing the agricultural products and the crafts of a state, right? So the Oregon State Fair has long included both in the crafts of home brewing and home winemaking. The Homebrew Beer Competition has been going on for 22 years. The Amateur Wine Competition is even longer-lived - 2010 would be the 31st year.
So it comes as a shock to find both have suddenly been canceled out of the blue. A brand new interpretation of existing state law by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission and the state's Justice Department determined that the competitions were illegal. Why? Because you're not supposed to serve your home-made alcohol to the public under the law, and some genius decided that the judges in the competition are the public. So they can't taste the beer or wine, because that would be serving them.
Local news reports on the lunacy: