Take a woods walk to learn about sustainable forestry and see a demonstration of a sawmill, learning about how sawyers get maximum use from each log. Craft demonstrations also at Martin’s Lumber.
On Memorial Day weekend the little town of Thurman was rocked on its heels by raging floodwaters that washed out bridges, roads and driveways all over its 97 square miles.
Two months later, Irene came through with a little love tap of her own, an unpleasant reminder that it’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.
Now Thurman, not to be kept down, is planning a different kind of deluge — a flood of visitors, coming to celebrate the season.
The Thurman Fall Farm Tour, now in its fourth year, forges ahead with this rite of autumn Oct. 8 and 9, enticing guests with nearly 20 sites and special activities, “a weekend of country fun,” as organizers have dubbed it, the perfect something-for-everyone event. Most sites and activities are free, so come with a full tank of gas (no pumps in Thurman, but miles of adventures to locate), grab an event map and explore the back roads to find them.
Guests who have come to the Fall Farm Tour in past years will find their traditional favorites. Valley Road Maple kicks off each day at 9 a.m. with platters of fluffy pancakes dripping with pure maple syrup, accompanied by Oscar’s sausages, and this year will continue offering “breakfast” until closing time at 4 p.m. Whitefields’ Farm, will have piles of this year’s pumpkins.
Toad Hill Maple Farm will display jugs and jars of maple syrup, containers of maple cream, all lined up with the rest of their wares, some for sampling, some for shopping, and, like most of the sites, will offer tours and demonstrations.
Martin’s Certified Tree Farm will give guided woods walks and explain the concept of sustainable forestry, also demonstrating crafts and sawing. Nettle Meadow Farm shines as it showcases its wares in a festival of tasting, accompanied by tunes.
On Saturday soloist “DIZ” takes center stage, and Sunday “Don’t Quit Your Day Job” belts out bluegrass. Nettle Meadow offers tours during its abbreviated hours (the goats and sheep must be milked on schedule) and tells people of the plight of their crumbling historic barn and the fundraiser being held to save it.
Adirondack Ambiance, a rustic furniture and painting gallery displays Adirondack-inspired art, and gives out Griffing homestead maps for self-guided walks around their 1804 historic farm.
But this year’s event trots out an array of new sites, hosting innovative offerings. The Glen Lodge on Route 28 will host a two-day craft show, while a quilt show and home show run both days at Thurman town hall in Athol. At a remote lakeside retreat off the grid, artist Diane Golden will lead twice-daily garden tours (noon and 2 p.m) a tour.
Post-Star columnist Maury Thompson, author of “The Biggest Kid at the Balloon Festival: The Walter Grishkot Story,” will make his Thurman debut, joining nearly a dozen authors from around the region selling and signing books at Athol Community Church, 572 High St., next to the firehouse, Saturday, Oct. 8. The Authors Fair will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. Other authors will include: Russell Dunn, Barbara Delaney, Gloria Waldron Hukle, Caroline Andrulis, Carol Gregson, Mary Lee Bourdeau, Amanda Shaffer, Randy Kneer, Nancy Pulling Best, Pat Leonard and Mary Sanders Shartle.
Thurman Fall Farm Tour guests may buy a special $5 train pass at any tour site to enjoy the “Thurman Hop” (round-trip between The Glen and Thurman Station) per schedule for the Saratoga-North Creek Railway.
The Fire Company's chicken barbecue on Saturday, Oct. 8 from 3 to 7 p.m. at Veterans’ Memorial Field. The squad building will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and beverages and chili will be sold. They have a restroom and will offer free blood pressure readings.