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Visitors can see special stock at historic site

Garfield Farm Museum gets start on season with event

CAMPTON HILLS – Baas, clucks, and moos all are part of the day at the 27th annual Rare Breed Livestock & Poultry Show and Sale, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 19 at the Garfield Farm Museum.

The sale gives visitors a chance to see these rare domesticated animals before the museum's season begins.

Guests also can tour the 1846 Teamster Inn and Tavern. A number of demonstrations are planned, which include spinning wool and shearing sheep. Refreshments will be served.

This preview of the area will wet the appetite for a more thorough look at the farm. The museum is open for tours from 1 to 4 pm. Sunday and Wednesday, June through September.

Garfield Farm Museum, on the National Register of Historic Sites, is made up of 374 acres and a former teamsters' inn dating back to the 1840s.

Among the buildings are three barns dating from 1860 to 1906, and three older buildings, the 1849 horse barn, the 1846 inn, and an 1842 grain and hay barn. Fifty-five acres are maintained as prairie, savanna, and wetlands. The Garfield Harley Ephemeral Pond and Woods is part of this.

Mill Creek Prairie and Sedge Meadow definitely are worth a close look. This land was used for growing hay and grazing, and never felt the touch of a plow.

A long list of native plants, such as Solomon's seal, evening primrose, May apple, black-eyed Susans, and Jacob's Ladder, grow on the farm. A list can be found on the museum's website.

Most farms have some kind of animals, and this one is no exception. Keep an eye out for the black java chickens. They are part of a project to preserve the breed. A lot of work has gone into this, so they deserve a moment of happily clucking at travelers.

Other plans at the farm this year are:

– 1840's Day: This is a 2-day event from noon to 4 p.m. June 16. There will be period demonstrations and tavern tours. The cost is $6 for adults; $3 for children 12 and younger.

– A prairie walk in July. No date has been set yet.

– An Antique Tool Show & Sale from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 4.

If you go ...

What: 27th annual Rare Breeds Livestock & Poultry Show and Sale

Where: Garfield Farm Museum, 5 miles west of Geneva off state Route 38 at 3N016 Garfield Road in Campton Hills

When: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 29. Museum open 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday and Wednesday, June through September

Cost: $6 for adults and $3 for 12 and younger

Information: 630-584-8485, or

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