Paul Herbold with Noah LaPoint and Stewart Strader, take over farming the land off the New Land trust in Saranac.
Three young farmers hope to welcome summer and people to the Saranac Memorial Farm for its first Summerfest on July 6.
The summer get-together will be held in the valley off of 100 Plumadore Road in Saranac. Farm owner Paul Herbold, along with Noah LaPoint and Stewart Strader, started farming the land off the New Land trust about a year ago, laying the foundation for something bigger to grow.
“We’re laying plans and planting in the ground at this point,” said LaPoint.
The festival will be held in a valley off Plumadore Road with ample space for tents and camping, a stage where visitors can watch a variety of musical performances, and a stone labyrinth people can try out.
The farm is a combined effort, following organic practices, growing greens and a variety of fruit on a portion of the 270-acre land.
Herbold said the land had been vacant for three years before he heard about it. After living in Saranac for years, he said he could see the potential and wanted to try to make something at the farm. SHF is a community based project in an area with both natural beauty and rich history in agriculture. Herbold said the trio is dedicated to learn and promote sustainable practices in farming and land management in order to return to a more healthy and balanced way of life.
The trio promotes the buy local initiative by selling produce to Nori’s Village Market in Saranac Lake, the North Country Co-op in Plattsburgh and other local stores.
“We are really in the beginning stages of cultivating this farm into being more,”LaPoint said. “We’re learning as we go, whereas farmers used to learn from their fathers and grandfathers. What we’re doing is a reflection of the young farmers’ movement. Every year we are going to strive to be bigger and grow more and more.”
Inspired by the Poobah Festivals that were once hosted at the New Land Trust, the Summerfest will bring music and guests to the farm.
Poobah Festival was a three-day music festival was held for many years at the farm, but it hasn’t been held for at least four years.
The festivities will begin with a potluck-style cookout at 2 p.m. which will run through the day. Music will include performances by Adrian Aardvard at 5 p.m., Lucid at 7 p.m., and Kimberly LeClaire will light up the meadow with poi performances creating an optical show to the rhythm made by the flames.
Area musicians can bring their instruments to play acoustic performances throughout the night. Herbold said he expects at least 200 guests for the festival and invites people to stay the night.
“We have a lot of room for tents in the valley and people can stay after,” said Herbold. “It’s a festival for everyone. We want to kick off the summer with good people and want this festival to be family friendly.”
There are few rules for the festival, including no dogs or other animals and no campfires.
Herbold said once visitors get the Plumadore Road, there will be signs and LED lights directing them where to park and how to get to the valley on the day of the festival.
“We want this to be a really great way to kick off the summer with great people and good music while at the same time raising awareness for the great hiking opportunities at the Land Trust and let people know about us and the farm,” said Herbold.
Admission is a suggested $10 donation.
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