by Lisa Tome
The Cecil County Farm Museum's annual Apple Butter Festival has been shaken to the core.
For the first time, the event won't be held at Fair Hill Fairgrounds.
Instead it will be held at the museum property at 912 Appleton Road, Elkton. On Saturday, October 20, the annual Apple Butter Festival hosted by CCFM will be held from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. A 5K run is tentatively planned as part of the event.
There will also be demonstrations of apple butter making, vendors, live music and more. A vintage base ball game will be held on a field adjacent to the museum at 1 p.m. This will feature local players and visitors from New Jersey. Base ball was added because Mel Bacon said farmers avidly played baseball after WWII.
Bacon, a retired Cecil County Public Schools teacher and coach, told members of the Cecil County Council last week about the venue change. Bacon said that he is working as "a lobbyist" for the farm museum. He said in the wake of fewer farms in Cecil, he's working to get the farm museum site developed. Bacon said he lived near the site for 40 years and wasn't sure of the role of the farm museum beyond "apple butter and tractor pulls" until he took an interest in it 10 months ago.
In the four years since the farm museum struck the deal with the school system to lease an eight acre parcel of the property for $1 per year $225,000 worth of renovations have been undertaken. "Our success is dependent on a collaboration," said Bacon.
Bacon said the goal is to have the farm museum be- come part of the elementary school education curriculum similar to the programs provided by the Fair Hill Nature Center. Bacon said another goal is to get potable water to the farm museum site. Councilman Bob Meffley stated that work is underway to get more grant money for work at the museum site.
Bacon also outlined plans for collaboration between Cecil County School of Technology and the farm museum. Tech students will help promote the upcoming 5K run in their home schools. The farm museum will host one of Bacon's former students this week.
Bacon explained that he was the fifth grade teacher of Steve Connelly. Connelly now is the Assistant Secretary of Marketing Industries and Consumer Services for the State Department of Agriculture. He will be at the museum Tuesday.