Saturday, May 2, 2009

Fifth at the Festival

Here I am in Maryland for the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and the skein of yarn that I spun and entered in the Skein and Garment got a 5th place finish! I am thrilled!

When I awoke this morning, a gentle rain was falling. I drove the 25 miles to the festival in the rain, but it stopped as I pulled into my parking spot in the huge parking field. I arrived at 8:30 AM and began my exploration of the barns, tents and exhibit halls. There were a few more short rain showers but I think it quit raining by 11:00 AM. As expected there were beautiful displays of yarn and fiber. I did buy some things, but I don't think I went overboard. I will take a photo of my purchases when I get home.

The crowd didn't build quite as fast as previous years, the rain must have given people a reason the stay home a bit longer. However by early afternoon, I think the crowd was its usual size.

This year, for the first time, I volunteered in the souvenir sales building. Some people stand in line for more than an hour to buy a T-shirt, bag, or mug with the festival logo on it. Each year a contest is held to design the logo for that year's festival, so T-shirts become collector's items. I didn't volunteer until 1 PM, and by then, many of the color selections for the shirts were sold-out, but that didn't mean I wasn't busy. For 2 hours, there was a constant stream of people who needed to be waited on. All the merchandise is behind display tables, so as people make their choices, I had to go find what they wanted and then write up a sales ticket. My 2 hour shift went by very quickly and I would help out again next year.

I toured the animal barn and am always impressed with the variety of sheep that are on display. I watched the animal auction, but did not raise my hand, and I watched the sheep dog demonstration, which is always impressive. I missed the sheep shearing demo because I was at a Ravelry meet-up.

So, it was a great 8 hours at the festival! Here are some photos from the day.

A recently sheared alpaca

Another alpaca needing a haircut

Sheep getting ready for the show ring

A lamb

Fiber just screaming to be touched

Lunch was a lamb burger

Some of the people

Sheep dog herding sheep

Crazy sheep art

My award winning skein

Love the colors

Recently sheared llamas

The reason to go to Maryland

Hope all is well.