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Sir George smokes competition

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By Robin Bass

Sir George the gourd dragon has valiantly earned his ivory-haired creator the title of best artisan in the land – or, at the very least, Best in Show at the 2009 All About Gourds exhibit in Maysville.

“I was hoping that maybe he would win best fantasy character,” said Lois Platt, of Taylorsville. But after discovering that she won the top prize, “You could have knocked me over with a feather.”

Sir George, a four-foot tall mythical creature, is made almost completely of gourds. Platt said she created her prize sculpture during the summer of 2008 after someone gave her two large club-shaped gourds.

“Gourds speak to you. I especially like the odd shaped gourds,” she said.

After turning the two dried pieces in her hands, it suddenly came to her. “There’s a dragon in there,” exclaimed Platt.

If Sir George looks familiar, it is because he was the centerpiece of a gourd table scape created by Platt for the 2009 Kentucky Gourd Festival which was held at Spencer County Elementary School last May. Surrounding his royal blue-ness, were all manner of gourd fairies, trolls and dragonflies. Platt’s labor of love and fantasy earned her second place at her hometown show.

“Sir George has been vindicated,” said Platt.

And she got paid – a whopping $500. What are her plans for the winnings?

“It will probably go into buying more gourds,” said Platt, “or paying my husband for driving me down there three times.”

Platt’s winning piece will be on display at the Mayfield/Graves County Art Guild’s Ice House Gallery until October 10. Now in its eighth year, the show features 76 pieces by 28 artists from 11 different states.

All About Gourds was the focal point of Mayfield’s annual Gourd Patch Festival which was held September 19.