PITTSTON — From steer and oxen pulling, fireworks, and a meet and greet with the Maine Cabin Masters, to bicycle giveaways, a plethora of rides, and a goat milking demonstration, the Pittston Fair offers a little something for everyone. This year, the fair saw great attendance as it celebrated its 70th anniversary.

Peter Weeks, vice president of the Pittston Fair Association, said the fair was “full” on Friday night, with between 3,000 and 4,000 in attendance watching the fireworks and meeting with the Maine Cabin Masters, among other fair-related festivities.

Guests could choose from among a variety of food and entertainment vendors Saturday at the Pittston Fair. Chris Bouchard/Kennebec Journal

He said the fair association consists of about 30 volunteers, and that there are about five on the fairgrounds at all times helping with parking, garbage clean-up, and any electrical issues.

He said the fair mostly stuck to its popular formula for the 70th anniversary, which opened Thursday and continues through Sunday.

“We just poured it on a little bit heavier,” he said.

The fireworks show, for example, was bigger than before.


Steven Marson of Central Maine Pyrotechnics was responsible for the fireworks show, and Weeks said they paid more this year than before, and that it seemed like Marson likely donated more fireworks himself.

“There’s only so much you can do as a little fair,” he said, adding that any money made at the fair goes right back into the fair for things like electrical upgrades and plumbing.

“Last year was a record amount, but (on Friday) night we were right on pace with last year,” he said regarding attendance.

Liz Chaisson, director of the Maine Strawberry Pageant, said 18 girls are participating this year, which is the highest number they’ve had for the last few years.

She said the Maine Strawberry Pageant is not a beauty pageant, but instead involves contestants writing essays and being interviewed by judges about why they would like to represent the fair as well as Maine agriculture.

The winners will then attend other fairs and parades in the area, including some as far away as Massachusetts.


Farmer Sarah Perkins shows young onlookers the proper way to milk a goat Saturday at the Pittston Fair. Chris Bouchard/Kennebec Journal

On Saturday, Chaisson said they sold more than $200 worth of strawberry shortcake in an hour.

The pageant coronation is set for 4:30 p.m. on Sunday. The fair’s annual bicycle giveaway is also scheduled for Sunday at 3 p.m.

As with all Maine fairs, Pittston’s annual installment has several events and activities tied to agriculture. Among them was a goat milking demonstration from Pittston-based Ledgeway Farm.

Sarah Perkins, who owns the farm with her husband, Matt, said she hopes the milking demonstration will provide agricultural education for kids, and also show people interested in homesteading that it’s not as daunting as it may seem.

“They may be deciding on whether to buy a cow or buy a goat and needing to get a little bit of information about which one is going to be a better fit,” she said, “so it’s great to have them out here and be able to do some agricultural education.”

Perkins took onlookers through the process step-by-step, beginning with placing Lexi the goat on a milking stand where she eats grain and prepares to be milked.


Sarah Perkins, owner of Ledgeway Farm in Pittston, prepares her goats for a milking demonstration Saturday at the Pittston Fair. Chris Bouchard/Kennebec Journal

Young children excitedly watched and, after Perkins briefed them on the proper procedure, took turns milking Lexi.

Between demonstrations, Perkins also sold goat milk soap, which is the farm’s primary source of income. She said the farm made 32,000 bars of soap last year.

This year, they are expecting to sell 50,000 bars.

“We have customers that will come to a fair just to stock up on their soap,” she said. “Of course there’s so much more for them to do while they’re here.”

Perkins, who makes appearances at several Maine fairs, said they have several regular customers at the Common Ground Fair who will buy a year’s worth of soap each time the event comes around.

All in all, Weeks said on Saturday that the fair is going well, and continues to offer a wide variety of fun summer activities.

“Everybody has different tastes,” he said. “Some people like going to the exhibit hall, some people go to the pulling ring all day, and some people go the fair because the kids all want to go on the rides.”

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