Northern Maine Fair brings past to life with living history demonstrations

17 years ago

       Living history display  

The Historic Pavilion will once again offer glimpses into our area’s past at this year’s Northern Maine Fair. The Historic Pavilion will be open Tuesday, July 31 through Thursday, August 2 from 4 to 8 p.m. in the Forum building. Admission to the Historic Pavilion is free once general admission to the fair has been paid.
This year’s exhibits will include displays from the Presque Isle Historical Society, Bridgewater Historical Society, Caribou Historical Society, Fort Fairfield Historic Society, Haystack Historical Society, Madawaska Historical Society, Southern Aroostook Agricultural Society, Thomas Heritage House, Aroostook Genealogical Society, Maine Veterans, Northern Maine Science Museum, Dick Graves’ photo collection, a camera collection, Nylander Museum, the Old Iron Inn and the Knott II Bragg farm.
The Presque Isle Historical Society’s booth will highlight the history of the Vera Estey House, Cook Florist, the Star-Herald and Maine Public Service.
In addition to static displays, the Pavilion will feature several living history demonstrations. Presque Isle Historical Society’s display will feature live ‘freeze’ models showcasing antique clothing on Wednesday and Thursday. Other living history demonstrations will include barrel making, spinning, tatting, wood-carving and more.
Stop by to learn more about the history of northern Maine, stroll through the demonstrations and vote for your favorite display.
For more information on the Historic Pavilion, please contact the Presque Isle Historical Society by e-mail at: or by phone at 762-1151.
Ways of the Woods
Ways of the Woods: People and the Land in the Northern Forest, which toured across the four-state Northern Forest region last summer, is in the midst of its 15-week Fairs and Festivals—2007 tour. It will be at the Northern Maine Fair in Presque Isle from August 1-4.
Ways of the Woods is the Northern Forest Center’s mobile museum about the changing relationships between people and the land. This traveling exhibition combines interactive displays, interviews and artifacts with live performance and traditional arts demonstrations to showcase the history, culture and heritage of the Northern Forest region of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and New York.     Often called a ‘museum on wheels’ because it is housed in an 18-wheel tractor-trailer, Ways of the Woods elicits powerful, emotional responses from attendees as they explore both the history of the region and their personal connections to it. The exhibit received major support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
“Ways of the Woods was designed to help people appreciate the past, understand the present and plan for the future in one of America’s most important and rapidly changing forest regions,” said Northern Forest Center Senior Program Director Mike Wilson, who tours with the exhibit.
“When people come to Ways of the Woods they have a great time learning about the history of the Northern Forest, but they’re also prompted to think about what life is like here today and how people can work together for a more prosperous and sustainable future.”
Since August of 2006, more than 12,000 people from across the region have toured Ways of the Woods and thousands more have spotted the 53-foot-long truck — which is decorated with Northern Forest images — as it drives from event to event. Those who visited the exhibit were moved and inspired. Comments included: ‘Thanks for helping me better appreciate a place I’ve lived for forty years;’ ‘Great exhibit. Kids nowadays need to know the history of this area so they can be part of planning the future;’ and ‘This stuff is so interesting. Yay history!’
This spring, Ways of the Woods was an integral part of the Northern Forest Center’s Northern Forest Days celebrations that took place in eight towns across the region.
Partner organizations in each location designed the multi-day events to reflect the local community’s needs, interests and opportunities. Community-designed activities included traditional music performances, art exhibits, community dinners, school group tours to a local hardwood sawmill, a 14.5-mile canoe race and more. Local school group field trips to Ways of the Woods were a major aspect of each Northern Forest Days celebration.
“We’re seeing over and over again that kids in the Northern Forest clearly have a strong connection to the region,” said Carolyn Graney, Ways of the Woods tour manager. “It’s exciting to see how Ways of the Woods helps them realize this and share their feelings with their friends and families, and it’s especially inspiring when they bring their parents back to share the experience.”
Visit for updates. To schedule a Ways of the Woods visit for 2008, contact Carolyn Graney, tour manager, at 824-8263,
The Northern Forest Center is a private, non-profit organization that mobilizes people to build healthy communities, economies and ecosystems by working together across the Northern Forest region.