Patti’s July 22 “Inside New Gloucester” Column

Open Farm Day in NG

Visit three participating New Gloucester farms in the statewide “Maine Open Farm Day” on Sunday, July 24. In all, more than 150 farms throughout the state Maine join in this one-day celebration of agriculture and farming.

Check out Maine’s largest Angora rabbit farm, Acker’s Acres Angoras, 359 Gloucester Hill Road, open from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Owner Beth Acker gives tours of her rabbit barn and fiber studio, as well as demonstrations of spinning with spinning wheels and drop spindles.

Foggs Hill Farm, 943 Intervale Road, is open from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Tour the petting zoo at this farm, which has all-natural meats, sheep, goats, pigs, beef and poultry. Co-owner Gail Kolda is happy to answer your farm-related questions.

From noon until 4 p.m., Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village, 707 Shaker Road, offers free special events for the whole family. It is among the oldest farms in Maine still operated under the same management – since 1783. See Scottish highland cattle, a flock of more than 40 sheep, bees, barn cats, apple orchards, herb and vegetable gardens.

Featured activities of the day include guided tours of the 1830 barns by Brother Arnold Hadd, tractor-drawn wagon rides, honey bee display and hives and tours of the Shakers’ historic herb gardens. Traditional craft demonstrations wll include woodcarving, blacksmithing, yarn spinning, chair seat weaving, “Lamb to Loom” demonstrations, rug hooking and a tin-type photography demonstration. Additionally, there is going to be a bake sale and a plant sale, plus barbecue lunch plates are available for purchase.

The Shaker Store and Shaker Museum Visitors’ Center are both open. Also taking place will be book signings by Chris Becksvoort, “The Shaker Legacy;” Mary Doyle, “Unique Maine Farms;” and Don Perkins, “Barns of Maine.”

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see parts of Shaker Village that are not regularly open to the public. Bring your cameras. For more information, contact the Shakers at 926-4597,,, or follow them on Facebook.

For Patti Mikkelsen’s complete column in the Lakes Region Weekly, go to