Aug 19, 2022 - News

Axios’ Jason Clayworth is the first guy in the Iowa State Fair’s husband calling contest

A photo of Jason Clayworth
Photo: Linh Ta/Axios

I won sixth place at the Iowa State Fair’s husband calling contest on Friday.

  • There were about a dozen entries.

Why it matters: I didn’t win but I was the first guy to compete in the contest’s history.

Catch up fast: Husband calling is a state fair tradition going back more than 30 years.

  • It started in the days before cell phones when spouses — typically a wife — would yell across a field to alert their hubby that a meal is ready, Regina Pirtle, superintendent of Pioneer Hall told us.

State of play: I had no problems entering — instead Pirtle and the other contest organizers encouraged me to compete.

  • And nobody in the audience heckled.

Of note: The winner this year was a 58-year-old single woman.

  • She recited a personal ad in search of a husband between the ages of 40 and 60.

My thought bubble: It’s time to change the name to the “spouse calling contest.”

A photo of the husband calling contest
Some of the competitors in this year's husband calling contest at the Iowa State Fair. Photo: Linh Ta/Axios
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