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The fleece tent! It’s big and full of fluffy goodness.

 

 

So this weekend I am headed to the Maritime Spinners Retreat in Bouctouche, New Brunswick. I am excited to go but just realized that I haven’t posted pictures of my last excursion to the Common Ground Fair in Unity, Maine in September. It was so much overwhelming fun!

The Common Ground Fair is put on every year by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association or MOFGA. It has grown to a large amazing fair that celebrates all things organic, home grown and home made. I just took a few pictures to show the amazing variety of things you can learn and do while at the Common Ground Fair.


 

 

Beautiful loom. Can you see the birch bark in there?
Beautiful loom. Can you see the birch bark in there?
A Mainer selling walking sticks. Appalachian trail anyone?
A Mainer selling walking sticks. Appalachian trail anyone?

This year there were over 67,000 people who attended the fair which is only three days long. One amazing and wonderful thing many might not know is there are no electric rides at this fair. There is a horse cart you can ride around, everyone is encouraged to ride their bikes to the fair and they even have a dress up parade for the kids. The variety of non-electronic farm and family activities for people to watch and even participate in was amazing. No wonder they can get this many people to come to a place really in the middle of nowhere to just have a blast playing in the dirt!


The reason I was there was to coordinate fleece tent volunteers and also volunteer in the Fleece Tent. This is where hand spinners of yarn, or wool felters, or even people looking for natural pillow stuffing come to buy raw fleece from Maine sheep farmers. I and my fellow fleece tent volunteers helped hundreds of people select and purchase a fleece, or five in some cases. I also might have tossed a half fleece I purchased in my stash after the sheep farmer marked down the price! Lucky me that she didn’t want to take fleeces home. More on that lovely purchase after I get the fleece washed.


 

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This guy showing people how to properly maintain their scythes. Yes, really. Another volunteer was demonstrating proper technique on a patch of unmowed grass nearby.
Bacon anyone? Knowing where our food comes from is a fair theme.
Bacon anyone? Knowing where our food comes from is a fair theme.
Bird houses made from repurposed junk! I really wanted one of the tea kettle bird houses.
Bird feeders made from repurposed junk! I really wanted one of the tea kettle feeders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So after three days of fleeces and wandering around a bit I was happy to go home, exhausted but happy to have helped put on a successful fair. It was a beautiful weekend, I had a blast spinning and touching fleeces. I look forward to next year!


 

This fair is one of the best ways to really learn why it is important to support small farmers and businesses. If you are ever in Maine in late September, I highly recommend going. If not, then just check out your own local fair, but not just for the rides and fair food. Pet a pig, or a goat. You might end up getting one of these!

You can buy things like chicken coops and green houses at this fair.
You can buy things like chicken coops and green houses at this fair.

 

 

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