MOFGA’s Common Ground Country Fair Celebrates 40th Year

Annually, the Common Ground Fair – put on by Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Assn – is North America’s largest organic event and 60,000 people attend it’s three-day-run. The Fair was established to celebrate rural life.
The Fair is always the first Friday, Saturday, Sunday following the Autumnal Equinox. That means this year’s 40th anniversary fair will be tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday.
If you are able to go this year you will be rewarded by a great event. If you can’t make it this year, do make your plans now to attend next year – we guarantee you won’t be sorry.
This interesting piece by Mary Pols takes a look back at forty years worth of Common Ground Fairs. Jim & Megan

“Bridgewater is a long way from Unity, and potatoes get harvested in September, so farmer and anti-GMO activist Jim Gerritsen doesn’t make it to the fair every year. If it’s raining in Aroostook County but not in Unity, that’s ideal; he can put the chores aside for a day and make the drive. One of his most memorable fairs was in 1978, when author Wendell Berry was the keynote speaker. There was a special breakfast with Berry, just for farmers.

“‘This was back when I was still a bachelor and had a cow that I had to milk,” Gerritsen said. “Everybody wanted to get into this breakfast, and MOFGA decided to let in two people from every county. They gave us four though because Aroostook County was so big. I got up at 2 a.m, milked the cow, met my friend in Houlton at 3 a.m., drove to Litchfield, had a nice breakfast with all this good Maine food, and then Wendell Berry started talking to us for about 45 minutes.

“‘Wendell Berry in a small setting with a roomful of farmers is something that I have never seen repeated again. I think he was really energized. It was one of the great opportunities in my life and it was all because of MOFGA,’ Gerritsen said. ‘I think everybody in that room, probably most of us, had read ‘The Unsettling of America’ and we recognized that this guy was prophetic… I would say it was a beautiful wedding of common interests.'”