During the winter months, when we were clearly stir-crazy and possibly insane, we talked with our local Blue Seal store and decided it would be an excellent idea to hold a “baby goat day” in the spring. We figured we’d bring in some of our baby goats for the day and have the chance to connect with their local customers who may be interested in getting into goats.
When the store posted the Baby Goat Day event to their FB page, people’s interest was fantastic. Even with the event months away, there we’re hundreds of people interested and saying they were going to attend. We all figured that most of the people saying they would attend wouldn’t show, as is usually the case with these types of things.
Before we knew it, kidding season had flown by, and Baby Goat Day was just a week away. And then our little event showed up in the paper. And a local magazine. And I began to panic. Would a big crowd actually show up? All we had was baby goats, and I felt woefully unprepared. Some last minute brainstorming had us whipping up some goat tutus, fun collars, and a batch of goat cheese for people to try.
The weather couldn’t have been more beautiful for a May day in Maine, and we thankful for it as we got ourselves situated. Five of our older baby goats went into a larger pen where people could come in and visit with them, manned by me, and six of our smaller babies went into a smaller pen, with my daughter in charge of letting people hold them. We were lucky to have some friends and family pitch in to help, including a stellar photographer to capture the event.
Before we knew it, there was a line around the building. It never let up. Everyone was so excited to meet the baby goats, from very young children, to teenagers, to adults, to seniors.
The most amazing part – not a single complaint. Even though it was warm out and people waited in line for over 45 minutes, not one grumble was heard. The local 4-H goat group came in and did a bake sale, and hot dogs were grilled with all proceeds also going to 4-H.
It was a long and exhausting day for all of us and the goats, but honestly we couldn’t have asked for a better day. It was great to get out in the community, teach some people about goats, and feel the sheer joy that people expressed when they got to hold a baby goat for the first time.
Second Annual Baby Goat Day
After our first Baby Goat Day, we felt we were much better prepared going into our second year of planning this event. This time we had two large pens, in the shade, for people to come in and visit with the baby goats. We had a third pen set up as a “rest area” for baby goats that got too tired or stressed from all the people. This year we also brought along two yearlings that would walk up and down the line for people to visit with while they waited.
The turn out for our second Baby Goat Day was even bigger than our first. We weren’t expecting that as several other farms had been hosting baby goat events in the area. Luckily we had a lot of friends and family on hand to assist.
Even with our careful planning, this time around the turn out was so huge that some folks did get irritated at the long wait. The event was slated to end at 2 PM, and we kept going until 3:30 PM just to try to accommodate everyone. People still complained when they were turned away as we tried to wrap things up. You can’t please all of the people all of the time, and we just have to live with that. It was challenging to deal with the negativity after such a long day, and after so much hard work at an event that we do free to the community. But, we love sharing what we do, and just hope we can continue to improve every year and continue to hold this fun event every year.