How to Prep for The Common Ground Fair

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I have been looking forward to returning to the Common Ground fair for exactly 7 years now. That’s how long it’s been. (Thanks, Facebook.)

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It’s the kind of fair where, upon entering, I let out a huge sigh of relief and say, “My people.” It’s the kind of fair you find the most delectable, delicious food that’s also local, organic, and (mostly) healthy. It’s the kind of fair where the parade is a compost parade. It’s a sustainable, organic, earth-loving, people-loving, information-laden, carve-your-own-wooden-spoons free for all, and Trevor and I could not be more excited (or prepared.)

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Never heard of the Common Ground Fair? Here’s the scoop:

  • This is its 37th year running
  • Run by MOFGA (Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association)
  • It celebrates the rural and agricultural traditions of Maine
  • This year there’s estimated to be over 60,000 visitors!
  • Held in Unity, Maine every year. Learn more here.

Thinking of joining us? Great! Here’s what you’ll want to bring:

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  1. Water bottle (free H2O stations to fill up throughout the fair.)
  2. MOFGA card! This baby gets you in FOR FREE all weekend long, is incredibly reasonable, & makes an important contribution to one of the best organizations in Maine. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  3. Bean Boots- there will be goat shearing demonstrations, mushroom foraging, and tons of mud. Birkenstocks (with socks) also appropriate.
  4. Big ass tote bag- you’ll go home with many goodies
  5. Floppy hat, or other distinguishably hippy/rugged farmer accessory
  6. Also great to bring: bike! Bike to the fair if you’re in the vicinity, or park at a slightly further away location and bike into the fair for valet parking and an extra $2 off your ticket. MOFGA also recommends you bring a fleece and a rain jacket, non-toxic sunscreen and mosquito repellent.

The fair is jam packed with about 100 different presentations, hands on learning experiences, book signings, and animal husbandry demonstrations, so if you want to get the most out of your fair experience, plan ahead!

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Here’s what Trevor and I are most excited about:

  • Medicinal Herbs and the Chakras
  • Qi Gong: relaxing into Body, Earth, & Spirit
  • Garlic planting demo
  • Sheep dog demo
  • Processing acorns into Flour
  • Canning basics
  • Root medicines
  • Grass-Fed Vegetables (what?!)
  • Goat Hoof Trimming
  • Work Hard Pain Free
  • Animal communication
  • Creating garden ecosystems using permaculture
  • Farm labor: the missing link in the local food system
  • Maine food strategy
  • Navigating renewable energy options
  • Herbal and kitchen first aid
  • Basics of cider making
  • Earth-sheltered housing and living roofs
  • Beekeeping basics for new “bees”
  • Herbs for toxic relief
  • Passivhaus: an ecological way to build in Maine
  • Sustainable families, sustainable communities
  • What forests and prairies can teach us
  • ­­Root Cellars
  • Foraging the wild plants of Maine- Walk
  • Healthy foods for nursing moms
  • Environmental and Financial benefits of biomass heat
  • Mind & body skills” harnessing the power of the mind for stress reduction
  • Enhance your cooking and your health
  • Carving a paddle

Good thing we’re going Friday evening and all day Saturday and Sunday! We’ve got a lot of ground to cover. Hope to see you there.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFun fact- my dad designed their 1991 poster!

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