UNITY — Nearly 68,000 people flocked to the three-day Common Ground Country Fair, which opened Sept. 23 and ended Sept. 25.

A long line of cars backed up traffic at times on Thorndike Road as the fair, finally held again in person, drew record attendance. The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association held the fair virtually for the last two years because of the coronavirus.

In 2019, 54,414 people attended the fair , but this year’s attendance far surpassed that with 67,848 people over the three days, according to Executive Director Sarah Alexander. T-shirts with this year’s chosen raven graphic sold out by Sunday.

A man demonstrates blacksmithing at the Common Ground Fair Sept. 25. Photo by Kendra Caruso

Feedback from fair attendees was positive, she said in an email to The Republican Journal. “People were excited to reconnect, learn new things from the more than 500 presentations, eat delicious organic food from our fair vendors, and support our farmers, exhibitors and artisans,” she said.

Alexander commended the more than 2,000 fair volunteers who helped run the event, stating that they “really went above and beyond this year to make the fair a huge success.”

A young girl gets pushed down a slope at the Common Ground Fair Sept. 25. Photo by Kendra Caruso

Common Ground Fair attendees enjoy contra dancing Sept. 25. Photo by Kendra Caruso

A boy fills water buckets for livestock at the Common Ground Fair Sept. 25. Photo by Kendra Caruso