The 24th Annual Washington County Fiber Tour - An Event for All Ages

Friday, April 15, 2016

It's back....Spring, that is!  I don't know about you, but when the sun is out and the temperature is above 50 degrees, my attention is drawn outside where I can take a deep breath and feel the warm sun on my face.  Who wants to be inside on a day like today?  In case you're anything like me, today's post will hopefully inspire you to get outdoors next weekend to enjoy the 24th Annual Washington County Fiber Tour (April 23 and 24th)!  Having done this the past two years, I can wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone who loves beautiful countryside, beautiful farms, beautiful animals and great people.  I think there's something in that list for just about everybody!
What is a Fiber Tour, you ask.  Well, the fiber tour is a tour of several farms all over Washington County that raise animals for the purpose of harvesting fiber!  To be more specific, let me take a quote from their brochure where their mission statement says, "The Washington County Fiber Tour is dedicated to educating the general public and the craft community about the amazing variety of fiber producing animals being raised in the area. The participants demonstrate the animal husbandry and the processes involved in converting these fibers into the textiles used in our everyday lives."  On the tour you'll have the opportunity to visit 13 farms in addition to the Battenkill Carding and Spinning Mill.  What does that mean?  It means you get to visit the farms that raise the animals - sheep, alpacas, llamas, rabbits, and goats - and see how the animals are sheared and the fiber turned into beautiful yarn, and every step along that process.  Not only will you see shearing demonstrations, you can watch the fiber as it is carded, and spun.  You'll even get an up-close and personal visit with the animals - an experience sure to thrill the kids as well as the young-at-heart.  If you're a spinner, knitter or do felting, this event is for you.  As for me....I go for the animals.

Elihu Farm in Easton, NY
Even though we've done the tour twice, we still haven't seen every farm on the tour.  You really need two days to accomplish that.  I have some favorites on the tour that I highly recommend (although I'm sure they're all wonderful).  Farthest away, but well worth the drive, is Dancing Ewe Farm in Granville.  If you follow my blog you're quite familiar with this one, if not there'll be links to each farm listed in this post, as well as links to the Fiber Tour Brochure.  At Dancing Ewe Farm, Jody & Luisa Somers raise sheep for fiber and cheese production.  Once you visit for the fiber tour, you'll want to make reservations for dinner on the farm where Jody prepares authentic Italian cuisine.  My post on dinners on the farm is my most popular post and it's no wonder as this is a unique and unforgettable event.

Another favorite stop on the tour is September Morning Alpacas.  Home to some of the sweetest alpacas around, September Morning Farm is located in Buskirk where the only thing more special than the animals and their owners is the view.  Dominick & Maryann Giglio will be your tour hosts and will provide fun and educational activities for the kids.

You can't miss St. Mary's on-the-Hill of Cashmere where cashmere goats are raised by the Anglican/Episcopalian Sisters of St. Mary at their convent in Easton/Greenwich.  

Alpacas of Breezy Hill Ranch is also a favorite of ours.  Great owners and lots of beautiful alpacas, activities for the kids, demonstrations, a great gift shop and more!

Some of the alpacas of Breezy Hill Ranch

With enough farms to keep you busy both days, this is a wonderful and educational experience for everyone.  And it's free!!!!  Now all we need is some weather like today and we'll be all set.  For more information and to read more about this year's tour, use the links below.

Alpacas of Haven Hill - another great stop!

For a peek at Crazy Legs Farm - home of purebred Romney Sheep and a brand new crop of over 20 babies just waiting to meet you, check out their Facebook page at:
This one is definitely on our list for this year!  OMG.....those babies are just too darn cute!  

I can't think of a better way to enjoy this weather, can you?   Mark your calendar and plan to visit one or several of these beautiful farms next weekend, April 23rd and 24th, at the Washington County Fiber Tour.  Bring the kids, bring a friend, bring your camera!  And come back soon to Life As I See It!  Don't forget to share this post with a friend - on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter or by email using the links below!  Have a great weekend! 

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