1 The event was held on Sutton Island, Maine at the home of Polly Guth. Sutton is a small, private island south of Mount Desert. It is a beautiful and lush place - you can see Sutton Island from my Skylands terrace.
2 Sutton Island has no roads, or bridge to mainland, and no airstrip; however, with paths, it is possible to walk the circumference of the island in just a little more than an hour.
3 The island is accessed primarily by boat from the Northeast Harbor or by ferry from the Southwest Harbor.
4 Kevin and his friend, William, enjoyed the boat ride over.
5 I got a chance to speak with some of the key members of MOFGA. They have a 297-acre campus, which hosts many annual events including Farm and Homestead Day and Great Maine Apple Day. Joining me is Ted Quaday, MOFGA's Executive Director.
6 Here I am with farmer John Bunker. There is another MOFGA event in September - a country fair, how fun! I am holding the poster for it in this photo. John is a very passionate apple farmer, and preservation pomologist. He was featured in my Martha Stewart Living magazine. http://www.marthastewart.com/925905/apples-fruit-knowledge
7 I posed for a quick picture with Heather Spalding, MOFGA's Deputy Director.
8 Alice Percy, chairperson of MOFGA, told me all about its sustainable forestry program, an educational tool focused on teaching people how to manage forests safely and sustainably.
9 Baskets were filled with fresh and organic produce from local farms.
10 They were very colorful, and delicious looking. They made great centerpieces for the tables.
11 The view was spectacular - we watched these sailboats race.
12 Ted Quaday is an organic food advocate who dedicated many years to working for family farms and sustainable agriculture before becoming MOFGA's Executive Director in 2013.
13 Aside from her position as chairperson of MOFGA, Alice and her husband raise pigs and own the largest organic hog operation in Maine called Treble Ridge Farm in Whitfield. We talked extensively about her farm.
15 My own farming practices have been influenced by their work, and they provide essential support, information and guidance to this group of young farmers.
16 Polly Guth, who is a farmer as well, is a big supporter of MOFGA's initiatives.
17 Eliot was very enthusiastic about and proud of this organically and locally grown artichoke - California artichokes, watch out!
19 Amy and Hartley Rogers attended the lunch - they own Triple Chick Farm in Bar Harbor, where I often shop for produce. http://triplechickfarm.com/
20 Elsie Gawler and Tyler Yentes work at North Branch Farm. They both manage livestock, and Elsie also makes cheese using the dairy ingredients from the stock. http://www.northbranchfarm.org/
21 This is Annah MacPhee, daughter of Daniel MacPhee, MOFGA Director of Education, and Corinne Wesh. She was a delightful child and already very enthusiastic about farming!
22 This Israeli couscous and vegetable salad was delicious and filling.
23 For lunch there was a buffet-style spread. These are vegetable and chicken sausage shish kebabs drizzled with a yogurt sauce.
24 My plate looked so scrumptious - everything was delicious and very fresh.
25 Farmers' hands show the evidence of hard work. Here are Eliot's hands and Barbara's hands.
26 These are Alice Percy's hands.
27 Annah had a fun time playing outside.
28 Annah's mother, Corinne, and I had a nice time watching her play.
29 Tyler Yentes spoke with Alex Yovanovic, an investment manager at Trillium Asset Management.
30 Adrienne Lee grew up in Maine, moved away to study agriculture, and then returned to start New Beat Farm with her husband, Ken. You can learn more about their sustainable practices at http://newbeatfarm.com/11-2/
31 Guests left the island via ferry boats - they all had their baskets of produce with them.
32 The vegetables were so fresh - I'm sure all the guests enjoyed them immensely.
33 Here was our boat waiting to take us back to my home, Skylands.
34 If you are in the Unity, Maine area late September, I encourage you to go to the Common Ground Country Fair. http://www.mofga.org/