Felicitous fleece

Sheep and Wool Show returns to Dutchess Fairgrounds in Rhinebeck this weekend

by Lynn Woods
October 15, 2011 12:00 PM | 0 0 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Leaping llamas, dogs herding sheep and doing tricks with Frisbees™, sheep-shearing demonstrations, sheep’s milk cheese cooking demos, a wool fashion show, drop-spindle and wheel-spinning contests, a chopsticks knitting contest…You name it: If it has anything to do with sheep, you’ll find it at the Sheep and Wool Show, the annual animal extravaganza hosted by the Dutchess County Sheep and Wool Growers at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds on October 15 and 16. And that’s not even mentioning the stars of the show, who are the live sheep, of all types and sizes, as well as goats (including angoras, of course), alpacas and llamas. You’ll learn about exotic breeds that you never heard of, as well as the finer points of mohair and cashmere and the more creative things that people make from wool at the fiber arts demonstration.

This is also the place to purchase a cozy fleece for the sofa, bed or car, a fleece-lined pair of soft leather slippers or anything hand-knit or hand-crocheted, be it a throw, cap, mittens, scarf, sweater or socks. Wandering the aisles of crafted items, one is almost grateful for winter, because of the necessity that it creates for woolen things.

Plentiful comestibles will keep you well-fed for the day; plus, you can participate in a wine-tasting and attend “harvest kitchen” cooking demonstrations presented by Laura Pensiero, author of Hudson Valley Mediterranean and owner of Gigi Hudson Valley; Ulster Publishing food columnist Jennifer Brizzi; and Norma Chang, author of Wokking Your Way to Low-Fat Cooking, among others.

There are also numerous events for children, including a magic show by Steve Charney and Harry; a “Mad Science” show, in which kids can pan for gems; demonstrations by local sheriffs of how canines are used at the scene of the crime; a hay maze; cornhusk-dollmaking workshop; and the llama-leaping and punkin’ chuckin’ contests.

Tickets are $12 a day at the door, $9 if pre-purchased; a two-day package is available for $17. Visit for details on the dozens of events and a map.

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