Food, Forests and Fun Theme of Maine Harvest Festival

Ninth Annual Bethel, Maine Harvest Fest September 15-17. Forest Products day on Friday with tours of saw mill, forest products manufacturers and artisans, free to the public. Chowder and apple pie cook-offs on Saturday, farmer’s market, historical society displays, cider-making, arts and crats on the common.

(PRWEB) August 25, 2006 –The eighth annual Bethel, Maine Harvest Fest is scheduled for September 15-17. Presented by the Bethel Area Chamber of Commerce (, the event celebrates the area’s farming, forestry and recreation tradition.

Friday’s Forest Products Day includes tours of Maine Line Products in Greenwood to view wood basket production; Maine Artisans Wood Gallery in Rumford to watch a wood-turning demonstration; Maine Balsam Fir Products in West Paris to view manufacture of balsam fir pillows; Timberlake’s Home Store in Bethel to view traditional Shaker furniture making and Hancock Lumber in Bethel to see the process of milling pine from debarking the logs to the final finished boards. All tours are free to the public.

The Northern Forest Center’s “Way of the Woods” Exhibit will be on display Friday through Sunday at the Bethel Fire Station across from the town common. The interactive exhibit portrays the culture and heritage of the Eastern Northern Forest spanning Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and New York.

Saturday’s Harvest Fest on the town common includes an arts and crafts fair, Farmers’ Market, chainsaw carving, horse-drawn wagon rides, concert at the gazebo and the popular “Chowdah” Cook Off and Apple Pie Contest.

Chowder sampling coupons are 50 cents each for a 4 oz serving. Chowders include corn, smoked and grilled seafood, clam, salmon, sweet potato and shrimp and Mexican Tortilla. Tasters will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite chowder for the People’s Choice Award. The apple pies will be judged in the categories of traditional, non-traditional and professional. After judging, slices will be served.

The Bethel Historical Society will be open for its Maine Barn Exhibit, Natural Spaces photo display and old-fashioned apple cider making demonstration.

On Sunday, organized bike rides past local farms, hikes through the forests, canoe and fishing trips on the Androscoggin River, and apple picking at local orchards are planned. Trail and route maps may be picked up at the Bethel Area Chamber Office.

A complete event schedule with locations and times is available from the Bethel Area Chamber of Commerce at 1-800-442-5826, online at

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