Last updated: February 20. 2013 3:31AM - 614 Views

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The Lands at Hillside Farms in Shavertown is well-known for its fall festival.


So why not have a winter festival as well?


This year, there is one, called WinterFest, and it will run this weekend and next.


The farm is just as beautiful in the winter months, especially when it snows, said Suzanne Kelly, director of development and marketing at the nonprofit educational dairy farm.


Guests can sample a number of home-cooked foods, and there are plenty of activities for children, Kelly said.


As part of the festival, children and adults can learn about healthy eating, gardening and nature if they listen in on talks on health and nutrition, gardening, herbs and backyard birds, and there will be demonstrations of alpaca-fiber hand-spinning.


The hand-spinning demonstrations will take place in heated buildings – the farm's dairy store, a building next to the Mercantile Store and the greenhouse.


There will be numerous children's activities and games in the coach barn, Kelly said.


During the barn tours, adults and youngsters will get a chance to interact with milking cows and cows in the nursery, goats, sheep and chickens, Kelly added.


The animals are a huge draw. They so much enjoy interacting with people and especially children.


Afterward, families can sit around an open fire and enjoy s'mores.


Ice carvers will show off their skills on the second weekend of WinterFest. Kelly said the festival was lucky to get the ice carvers because it is a busy time for them with other festivals and competitions.


But there also will be plenty of other attractions.


We've had nothing like this in the past, Kelly said. We're definitely ramping up.


It won't cost much, either. Admission is just $1 per person, and parking is free.


It's farm-focused, family-focused and community-focused, Kelly said.


And, she said, the festival will not only draw attention to the farm but help it to survive.


This is a fundraiser just like the fall festival, Kelly said. What we raise during a fundraiser is reinvested in our education program. We need to get the word out on Hillside. We still need to reach out into our community.


IF YOU GO


What: WinterFest



When: Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; noon to 4 p.m. Feb. 2 and 3.



Where: The Lands at Hillside Farms, 65 Hillside Road, Shavertown


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