Agricultural state fairs in Maine, they are underway around Vacationland.
Many were scaled way back or not held at all during the pandemic. But the COVID virus is in the rear view mirror and all around the state folks are returning to traditional life. Here’s the list, the circuit of agricultural state fairs in Maine. This blog posts to showcase what happens going into an local agricultural state fair and why they are so important to the area of Maine where they happen.
Maine has a deep, rich tradition roots with family agricultural farming.
The lumbering of forest tracts and timbering vast tracts is right up there too. Managing your woodlot is a big way of our life when you are 91 percent wooded too. And we won’t leave out the vital importance of the Maine fishing industry. How important harvesting what’s below the water off the coast of Maine is at meal time and for the state’s tourism.
Farming in Maine, there was a time when the state was number one in agricultural food production.
In small farming communities around the state of Maine, it was not uncommon to need the ten fingers of both hands to list them all. Up and down each country road you could recite the small family farms in Maine that worked the dirt. Those folks who carved out a living from agriculture. Feeding others, being a farmer is and always was a noble profession. Now less than two percent of individuals grow the food consumed by the masses. There was a time in Maine when ninety six percent of folks tilled the soil and worked, raised families on farmsteads. Maine is right up there with a resurgence of micro farming. The average age of the national farmer is pushing sixty years of age.
The number of small family farm spreads dotting the countryside around Vacationland was pretty impressive.
It’s why the Grange hall was big in membership and the Future Farmer Of America chapters flourished. In Northern Maine, schools went in three weeks earlier than the rest of the state. To close for the same amount of time so students could help area farmers harvest their potato crops. Many a kid earned their winter jackets, helped out with the family needs by picking potatoes for area farmers.
Farming in Maine is such a big part of the state’s history and locals cherish the rich experiences learned by being part of area agricultural operations.
Baby beef, sheep, goat, raising chickens and egg production on a small scale and large truck gardens. They all are enjoyed as a big part of the simple lifestyle of farm to table living in rural Maine. So it is no wonder that state agricultural farm fairs are popular around Maine.
Here’s the list of 26 licensed Maine state agricultural fairs for 2021.
Kids chasing a piglet with the winner who lands one in the burlap bag getting to keep it. Can I Mom and Dad? He’s so cute. Oink. What’s that about you think I should call him Bacon? Hamchops? Why’s everyone laughing? 4H exhibits, baby beef, sheep being sheered for their woo. Ribbons in all colors awarded for everything from bread and butter pickles to dried flowers.
Quilting, art, photography, home cook food competitions. Raising goats, rabbits, chickens means responsibilities on a Maine farm and everyone in the family has a job. All the Maine farm family members are important parts of the agriculture operation.
Tractor and horse pulls, oxen displays, demolition derbies, vendors peddling fair food of all kinds.
Have a dough boy, sprinkled with confectioners white powdered sugar. My favorite, the Italian sausage smothered in onions, mingling with green and red peppers sauteed on the grill. Everyone hungry? Local service and church clubs have hot dog booths and burger wagons and you know the folks that take your order in small Maine towns. I’ll be on the Rotary gate to the park for a shift or two to exchange money for ticks to the state fair in my hometown this weekend. Everyone pitches in and helps make the local event home grown special.
Take a number and socialize with others you see on the state fair agriculture midway while waiting for the food order preparation.
Fireworks, little miss and mister firecracker pageants when your Maine agricultural state fair happens to land around the 4th of July. Exhibits of all types, car shows, carnival rides depending on COVID restrictions or the size of your fair. And farm tractors new and old appeal to a big segment of the fair audience who worked with them growing up. Someone’s Uncle or Grandfather owned a Maine farm spread and everyone has memories haying, picking potatoes, raking blueberries, repairing fencing, haying, etc.
Have you ever been to the agricultural state fair in Maine called the Common Ground?
2021 is the 50th anniversary of the Common Ground Fair. The multi day state fairs in Maine require year round planning. Sometimes insurance to be taken out to hedge the bet because so much is riding on the gate size and event coming off without a hitch. The living off the land lifestyle of simplicity. To appreciate the basics and what is real, all natural and not store brought. The Common Ground Fair is worth the annual t-shirt, the experience so many share so freely for the skill set gleaned from the agriculture “down on the farm” lifestyle.
The state fairs in Maine have to have a full slate of activities and events to be well rounded to appeal to all ages year after year.
Fireworks, horse harness races and shows, parades, craft exhibits, carnival rides all are part of the state fair agricultural in Maine circuits. The cooperative extensive service, 4H, Future Farmers group all come together with the Maine agriculture families to celebrate rural living.
More on Maine agricultural fairs, kicked off with the one coming up this weekend in Houlton ME.
Here is the link to the Houlton State Fair website. Beef, dairy, goat, alpaca shows are listed on the events list. Tractor pulls, open stage musical event, fireworks to cap it all off on our Nation’s 4th of July celebration. If you can sneak up into “The County”, see you this weekend at the lead in Houlton State Agriculture Fair for the 26 on the circuit around Vacationland.
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