If only this was my daily view. But since it's not the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival is how I get my sheepy fix each year. Last week I wrote about some of the wools I am looking forward to squishing (and buying). But I don't want to give you the wrong idea about what goes on.
Let's start with food. The festival is on the Howard County (Maryland) fairgrounds which means fair food. My friend and I have developed the tradition of ending our day at the festival with a soft serve ice cream, ideally dipped in chocolate. It's a treat I don't get any other times. At the entrance to the festival is a Market area with coffee from Zeke's (remember to bring travel mug), beer from Mikhouse Brewery (not for drinking there), and baked goods from Rare Opportunity. How wonderful is it that three of my favorites from my neighborhood farmers' market favorite will be there! Once inside, there will be lamb (a couple of different vendors) and two favorite cheese purveyors, Caprikorn Farm and Shepherd's Manor Creamery.
It is the lamb and the cheeses that remind me that this really is a sheep and wool festival. I know people have different views on this, but I don't see how we have a wool industry that works for the farmers if we don't have the meat and cheese.
There is also music. It is a treat to sit to eat lunch (or that ice cream) and listen to the music. There are also demonstrations, a sheep parade (really), sheep dog demonstrations, and a chance to learn about this year's Featured Breed, the Border Leicester. The question is can we do it all in one day? I just read today that one of favorites, Solitude Wool has some lovely induced Border Leicester that they will be bringing to market.
Next week, I will share a bit about some of the other things that go on (oh yes, there is more) such as the contests. I will also have a couple of suggestions if you are thinking of going and have never been. Let me know if you are going to be there.