New York Life InsuranceCompany
Karen Hausler/Registered Representative and Insurance Agent
Top of the Hill Treasures
Kathryn and Sarah Thomas
Molly Marie Made
The Gilded Door
Facebook/ The Gilded Door
Facebook/ Kreatively Kat
Perky Penguin Crafts
Facebook/ Perky Penguin Crafts Instagram @craftypenguin
Pink Zebra Home
O’Boys Soap Company
The Body Shop at Home
Audrey’s Art LTD
Blackbird Design Studio
Drawings By Shoham
Paparazzi Jewelry and Accessories
Facebook/ Johnson’s Jazzy Jewels
Magical Vacation Planner
USA Medicare Consultants
Erin Prendergast / Licensed Agent
Gotta Have It
Mary Beth Sharkey
In 1978, the CAA parking lot needed paving. Members Paul and Rose Westheimer, owners of The Carrot Barn at Schoharie Valley Farms, produced and packaged 1400 tons of carrots that year and suggested during a brainstorming session that a carrot-themed fundraiser might be a successful endeavor to complete the task at hand.
After more than 40 years of successful Carrot Festivals, the Westheimers were glad to see their idea become a community institution. They remembered Paul’s father, Julius, making and selling fresh carrot juice at the first festival! There were pony rides on the front lawn, along with cotton candy and taffy for kids. “It was minuscule compared to now,” Paul Westheimer said. The money raised in that first festival, mostly from selling fruit and vegetables, paid for the paving job and was the beginning of what has become one of the Capital Region’s favorite end-of-summer outings. Long after the Carrot Barn was sold, the Westheimers were active members of the Carrot Festival committee, until they relocated to Massachussetts. Sadly, we lost precious Rose z”l in early 2021. Her legacy lives on. The Carrot Festival now showcases foods and desserts, including several kinds of carrot cake. Other features include fresh produce from the Carrot Barn in Schoharie, live music and entertainment throughout the day, vendors and crafters, a community service tent, a pet adoption clinic, and plenty of activities to keep children entertained. The “star of the show” is the Signature Carrot Festival Carrot Cake: a buttery praline filling between the two cake layers, topped with a rich cream cheese frosting. In 2006, the Congregation copyrighted and published the cookbook Divine Kosher Cuisine. An entire cookbook section was devoted to Carrot Festival recipes. The cookbook contains many delicious kosher recipes and can be purchased at our Leora Judaica Gift Shop
Entertainment traditionally includes a Klezmer band, Israeli dancers, performers from Schenectady Light Opera Company’s (SLOC’s) fall shows, and much more. In addition, special afternoon concerts have featured the local bands Flame, Joe’s Boys, the McKrells, The Accents, and The Refrigerators, to name a few. In 2019, we were also honored with a performance by American Idol Third Place winner Madison VanDenburg, who lives in Cohoes.
Vendors and crafters sell jewelry, kitchen gadgets, pottery, cosmetics, floral designs, clothing, and more. The community service tent features local non-profit organizations showcasing what they do to help the community, as well as many volunteer opportunities with our new partner, The United Way of the Greater Capital Region! The children’s area is always filled with activities to keep kids of all ages busy for hours.
The Carrot Festival has become a community family tradition, and we are proud that COVID-19 did not stop us from holding a festival in 2020, even if it looked a bit different. But happily, the Westheimers’ vision carries on with volunteers hard at work planning our 2021 Carrot Festival. We welcome you to join us!
Carrot Festival Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CarrotFestival
Congregation Agudat Achim office: 518-393-9211
Contact Hillary at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-331-4208