Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
2008 Summer Fair News

Fair News Archive \ 2008 Summer Fair News

Jim Ahearne
Jim Ahearne

Jim Ahearne Hired to Direct Common Ground Country Fair
The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association has hired Jim Ahearne, a MOFGA member and Freeport resident, as director of its annual Common Ground Country Fair – Maine's renowned celebration of the organic harvest and of vibrant, local economies.

Ahearne brings to MOFGA an enthusiasm for local and organic foods and a unique experience with events, festivals and concerts. A graduate of Hobart College in Geneva, New York, Ahearne moved to Maine in 1988 and brought with him his interest in producing festivals and live music that began with his experience in college as the director of the William Smith and Hobart Colleges Folk Festival. His path to MOFGA includes positions with Maine Arts, The Kennedy Center Honors, Concerts for the Environment, MTV, his own concert promotion enterprise, Whirly Gigs, and nine years with Tea Party Concerts, the company led by legendary concert promoter Don Law.  More recently Ahearne managed international clowning festivals in China.

Introduced to MOFGA and the Common Ground Country Fair in 1989 via the internship that his then wife-to-be, Lucy Birkett, had with Hidden Valley Farm in Whitefield, Maine, Jim and Lucy have been regular fairgoers ever since.

 "When I told my daughters about my new job here with MOFGA, my eldest
 daughter's first comment was, 'Excellent, we'll get to stay over and camp at the Fair
 this year!'" Ahearne beamed.  "Needless to say, I share her enthusiasm for the Common Ground Country Fair, and I am delighted to have this opportunity to contribute professionally to such an inspiring and positive event here in Maine.”
Ahearne began his new position in early March, taking the reins from MOFGA's educational programs assistant April Boucher and associate director Heather Spalding, who have coordinated Fair logistics since Barbara Luce resigned as Fair director last October. Boucher and Spalding continue working closely with Ahearne, who observed, “With a planning team of close to160 volunteers aided by a core group of 25 on the Fair Steering Committee and the close collaboration with Heather, April and many other MOFGA staff members, I’m in good hands.”
"I couldn't be more pleased with the results of our several-month search for the next Fair director," said Spalding. "MOFGA is fortunate to have an excellent workforce of talented, capable and dedicated staff members and 
volunteers.  Jim's experience will be so helpful to us, and I'm sure we'll all
 have a great time learning from each other."


CGCF Poster 2008