Creative Shearing Competition

Join us for our first annual creative shearing competition. Not everyone can shear a sheep, but even fewer folks have either incentive or opportunity to show their imagination and expertise. This competition is intended to reward the shearer’s creativity with awards and public acclaim. This competition aspires to re-direct the shearer’s mastery as sculpture, landscaping, haute couture, or a journey of craft and art. Judging will be based on artistry, originality, humor, and skill. Shearing may be done at home or at the Festival any time prior to judging. Group efforts are permitted. Judging will be done on Saturday at noon in the Show Ring. Come see what our shearers have come up with!

To be avoided:

  1. Standard show ring conventionality of presenting a naked or nearly naked sheep in a beautiful, magazine-quality style.
  2. Heavy coloring, and especially dye, mousse, or paint that might be considered toxic. This is not a body-painting project.
  3. Any treatment that, although creative, causes discomfort to the animal. Embarrassment to the owner is okay.
  4. Entries mocking public figures and causing cultural division will be ineligible. Benign humor is, of course, what it’s all about.

All sheep must have approved interstate or Maryland health papers. See also Animal Health Regulations.


Prize money of at least $300 is guaranteed, and we hope that sponsorships will allow us to increase this amount. 1st,, 2nd, and 3rd places and Honorable Mentions will be awarded by the judges.

How to enter:

Pre-registration is required. To register, send name of owner/artiste(s), location of farm, breed of sheep, name of sheep and title of work to Peter Austin, POB 187, Ashton, MD 20861 or email .

Registration deadline is April 20.

2020 Catalog Cover Artist

Presenting our 2020 catalog cover, featuring an original woodcut done just for us by Bobby Rosenstock of JustAJar Design Press.

Schedule of Events

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Sharing a post from one of the contestants in our first ever virtual Junior Spinning Competition, which was held via Zoom as part of our Virtual Online Festival. Congratulations go to all of the contestants, whose ages ranged from 8 to 14. Here is how everyone placed:
Adeline - Most Even Yarn (spinning wheel category)
Grace - Fattest Yarn, Longest Yarn (spinning wheel category)
Caroline - Skinniest Yarn (spinning wheel category)
Theodore - Lumpiest Yarn (spinning wheel category)
Ava - Most Even Yarn, Skinniest Yarn, Longest Yarn (drop spindle category)
Preston - Fattest Yarn, Lumpiest Yarn (drop spindle category)
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Special thanks to committee member Patricia Sanville for organizing this online competition!
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The Maryland Make it With Wool program relies on its sale of Wool Wax Creme at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival to fund their activities. Since the festival was cancelled, they are selling the products by email this year. The post below shows the products available with instructions on how to order.

MIWW is an annual youth-centered sewing and needle work competition designed to promote the beauty and versatility of wool fabrics, yarns, and fibers. Preliminary competitions are held at the state level, culminating in the National Finals and Awards Banquet at the American Sheep Industry annual convention.

Please help keep Maryland youth sewing by ordering your wool wax creme today (plus it's a really great product, too).
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