MINOT, N.D. (AP) — The woman who has coordinated the open class food and needlework exhibits at the North Dakota State Fair for the past two decades has retired.

Fern Laudenschlager has stepped down as superintendent of the Minot event's food and needlework exhibit, Minot Daily News reported .

The 85-year-old said she took up the job because of her personal interest in quilting. She initially managed the exhibit mostly by herself. After some late nights, she realized she needed a team to help her run things smoothly.

Laudenschlager often spent fair days cleaning up around exhibits, troubleshooting, answering questions or chatting with people touring the displays.

"It's a big responsibility," she said. "The fun part of it is during the fair when everything is all put up and organized."

She said that over the past 20 years she's come to appreciate that "the talent in this state is unreal." Her favorite part was getting to meet all the exhibitors and see their work, which includes needlework and cake decorating.

"I really enjoyed it every year," she said. "The people got to be your friends. You see them year after year."

Despite the overall number of exhibits having declined, Laudenschlager said she still sees new exhibitors each year.

Merry Green will take over superintendent duties.

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Information from: Minot Daily News, http://www.minotdailynews.com