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The Fleece and Fiber Festival returns to Hallockville Museum Farm on Saturday, May 20 with demonstrations and vendors of handmade fiber crafts. (Photo Credit: Michael O’Connor)

Join Hallockville Museum Farm on Saturday, May 20 for one of Long Island’s largest celebrations of fiber arts and crafts at the 2023 Fleece & Fiber Festival. 

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., visitors can take part in this immersive experience of the life cycle of fiber, from sheep to sweater. Featuring dozens of fiber artisans showcasing their talents, this festival will allow visitors to view and participate in traditional craft demonstrations. Over two dozen vendors will be in attendance selling their handmade creations as well. 

“Everything for sale will be handcrafted,” said museum associate Emma Montross in a recent interview. “We are showcasing high-quality handmade items and the effort that is put into them.”  

A live sheep shearing by Tabbethia Haubold-Magee of Long Island Yarn and Farm will be among the demonstrations at this year’s festival. Visitors will have the opportunity to watch spinners transform raw fiber into yarn, weavers create cloth, quilters create colorful masterpieces and basket weavers turn raw materials into practical vessels. Visitors can view rug-hooking, knitting, crocheting, needlework and woodworking demonstrations as well. 

This year, The Fleece & Fiber Festival will have a brand new children’s activity area, with multiple educational activities and crafts for children, including stations that teach felting, a scavenger hunt and even a giant wooden cow to milk. Also, new this year is the petting zoo, where visitors can spend time with chickens, bunnies, and donkeys.  

“As a museum, we want to communicate the historic and cultural significance of fiber arts in the lives of our Long Island ancestors,” said Hallockville Museum Farm executive director Roberta Shoten in a press release. “Families such as the Hallocks raised sheep and spun wool, they created quilts, made baskets and practiced other fiber crafts in order to create essential elements for daily living.” 

Also at the festival, the volunteer Hallockville Bakers are to host a sale of homemade items, with proceeds going towards the Museum Farm. Golden Jalapeño food truck and Greenport Harbor Brewery will offer additional local food and beverages. Live music performed by Old Time Jam will occur later in the afternoon. 

“This is a great festival where people can do a little shopping, learn a little history and have some good food and fun,” said Montross. “We’ve been hosting this festival for many years now and we’re excited about how much it’s grown.” 

Over 1000 people are expected to be in attendance this year at the 28-acre farm homestead in Riverhead, so buy your tickets early. Tickets are $10 for those 13 years old and up and free for children under 12. You can purchase your tickets on the Hallockville Museum Farm website. A rain date is scheduled for Sunday, May 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.