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Mule Day to highlight history

POSTED: May 2, 2013 1:00 a.m.

JEFFERSON — As an annual tradition, Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm will celebrate its agricultural heritage by hosting Mule Day from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at the farm.

Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for children and includes admission to the farm and a whole hog BBQ lunch plate with drink. Lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Fried pies will be for sale as well as products produced on the farm. These include cornmeal and grits.

Tickets are available for purchase at www.shieldsethridgefarminc.com with PayPal.

Visitors can see displays of traditional farm equipment and animals as well as demonstrations of period crafts by local artisans at the Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm at 2355 Ethridge Road in Jefferson. Blue Grass Music will be played throughout the day. Farm buildings, including a working gristmill and blacksmith shop, cotton gin, commissary and teacher’s house will be open for touring. The buildings date back to the early 1900s.

Activities to enjoy will be split oak basket making, soap making, garden herbs and plants, and yard art made from old metal pieces. All items will be available for purchase. Children’s games will go on throughout the day.

Throughout the morning, Gene England will conduct a seminar on mowing, raking, hauling and building a haystack using mules and horses. A highlight of the day will be watching the horse drawn mowers, rakes and wagons create the hay stack. England will be available to answer any questions.

Direct descendant and caretaker of the farm, Susan Chaisson, has ensured the 16 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places are ready for visitors. She also coordinates volunteers who demonstrate plowing, quilting, blacksmithing, soap making and basket making as well as people to cook barbecue onsite.

“My late mother Joyce started holding these celebrations in the 1990s,” Chaisson said. “They’re such a wonderful way for folks to see how a farm operated 100 years ago in Northeast Georgia. It’s a great chance for families to spend a day together and have some good, old-fashioned fun.”

For more information, call 706-367-2949 or visit http://shieldsethridgefarminc.com.


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