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Shoreham orchard to host benefit concerts to raise funds for farmer flood relief

SHOREHAM — Champlain Orchards in Shoreham is hosting two days of live music this weekend to benefit Vermont farmers affected by Tropical Storm Irene.
Orchard owner Bill Suhr knows there is a need among Vermont’s agricultural community. Champlain Orchards itself lost more than 300 trees, snapped off by the wind and rain during Irene. Suhr estimated the cost of orchard storm damage was $100,000.
“But there are plenty of farmers who didn’t just lose crops.” Suhr said. “They lost their soil, too. That’s more permanent.”
Champlain Orchard employee Ben Campbell lives in the town of Jamaica in southern Vermont, where his house was damaged by floodwaters. Campbell commutes to Shoreham each week for work.
“We initially thought of this concert as a benefit for people like Ben, especially because he’s a musician himself. But the focus has shifted more to farmers,” Suhr said. “We have free concerts pretty often, and this one seemed like a perfect chance to raise some money.”
All proceeds will go toward emergency funds for farmers established by NOFA–VT and The Center for Agricultural Economy. The suggested donation is $20.
The event at the orchard, located at 3597 Route 74, will take place this Saturday and Sunday, from noon-6 p.m. each day. Wyndorf and Bright will play noon-3 p.m. on Saturday, followed by Mango Jam; The Freeman Corey Band will play first on Sunday beginning at noon, followed by Two Tone Deceiver at 3 p.m.
The event will be held rain or shine under tents set up by Celebration Rental, which is also putting up tents for the following weekend’s Ciderfest, showcasing hard and sweet ciders, local food and local music from Katie Trautz and the Tallboys. Champlain Orchards will continue to run weekend events throughout the fall, including a Harvest Fest on Oct. 9.

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