Homestead Farm Days slated for April 24

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FARMINGTON — The “work of our hands,” a variety of handmade, homemade and home-grown items including small farm animals, will highlight a Homestead Farm Day on April 24 at Trinity United Methodist Church.

Organizer Pat Starbird said she responded to farmers’ requests, “When can we do it again?” after last October’s event, which was a success despite a day of pouring rain.

Church officials wanted to schedule one event during a school vacation so April 24 was chosen. It will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the church on Route 2, east of Farmington.

Once again farm families are bringing small animals to sell or swap. Starbird is expecting newly hatched chicks, baby goats and maybe lambs, along with several rabbit cages on display for sale or swap.

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The idea for the Homestead Farm Days developed after Starbird didn’t think she had anything to bring to a church yard sale last summer. She and another family brought chickens, ducks, roosters and rabbits to the sale and all but two roosters sold.

After learning to barter with other neighbors and farmers, swapping vegetables for frozen chickens and eggs for jam, she went to farm families and found interest in bringing the church and community together for a sale/swap of animals and more.

The day also features “a real kaleidoscope of artisans,” she said. Makers of rustic birdhouses, library ladder chairs handmade in Wilton, pottery, handmade jewelry and quilted handbags, tied flies, home-made dog treats and oils/soaps will show their crafts.

“It’s important to me things be educational, fun and financially doable for our community,” Starbird said.

Demonstrations of spinning inside and goat milking outside, weather permitting, and massage therapy sessions are planned.

An indoor yard sale, not including clothes, is planned to support a Haitian mission for this event. It’s a community project to “reach out arms to the children in Haiti,” she said.

Two pieces of Haitian art brought back by Kathy Goings Caton, who’s Haitian ministry helps supply funding and materials for schools there, will be on sale at her table.

Church members will sponsor a sale of homemade goodies including baked beans and candy, and provide a chowder and biscuit lunch along with hot dogs on the grill. Breakfast items will be available from 9 to 11 a.m. A silent auction of items is also planned.

The event is a fundraiser for the church, Starbird said. For one of the spaces around the church, a $20 donation is taken to benefit the church’s It’s About Time Campaign. The church is raising funds to reduce the mortgage in order to hire a full-time minister in 2011.

abryant@sunjournal.com

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