Gourds shaped like alien creatures were not what I expected when I strolled through the Horticulture building at the recent Ravalli County Fair. But there they were. Sea monsters, bug-eyed monsters and a unique little display of Cinderella's horse and carriage - all made of vegetables.

Department superintendent Pat Miller was proud of the display, which both adults and children created for the fair. And, as the heat took its toll, some of the creations became more monstrous.

The imagination that goes into exhibits like this always impresses me. The handcrafted woodwork and the different media in art provide lots of opportunities for many in our valley. And if you take some time to enjoy the weaving and knitting, you'll see ideas that have not been tried before. Right next to those entries are the porcelain artists. Art is alive in those exhibits.

And then there's the photo category. The digital camera has brought so many more people to enter their photos. And the general quality of the entries has been better and better. A little imagination is needed to pick just the right way to photograph a subject and crop it.

It's nice to see some of those "outside the box" thoughts showing up in the work displayed at the fair.

However, Pat worried that the TV crews wouldn't see the veggie creations. I don't know if they did. Perhaps the monsters were too scary!