Coppal House Farm in Lee is hosting its nine-day Sunflower Festival and a senior meteorologist from the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine says the best days to be out there this week will be Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

"Wednesday night and Thursday looks like there's rain coming in and it may linger into Friday so Thursday and Friday are no good. Other than that, seasonable temperatures of around 80 and dry. We're getting into a drier period for once," John Cannon said on Monday morning, referring to the rainy summer the Seacoast has had.

 

The festival began on Saturday so people were busy working on the farm Friday in preparation for their visitors.

So many people turned up on Saturday that they posted a video on social media because the gelato truck had sold out for the entire weekend.

They also addressed the sunflowers, which are a little behind and stunted due to the rain, saying it is a live bloom that will continue throughout the festival.

For people who are not able to make it to the festival during the week, Saturday and Sunday appear to be clear with a 25 percent chance of rain. It is expected to be in the mid-80s in Lee.

How did the festival begin?

Carol Hutton and her husband, John, started growing oilseed sunflowers about 10 years ago and began the event to celebrate the short bloom time the flowers have.

Typically, that blooming period lasts about 12 days, so that is why the festival has a firm end date.

The Huttons partnered with Make-A-Wish in 2016 and at the end of the festivals, they donate 10 percent of their admissions to the cause. Over the past six years, they have been able to donate over $65,000, according to the farm's Facebook invite for the event.

Coppal House Farm is a livestock and grain farm. They will have a corn maze open from Sept. 4 to Oct. 31, according to their website.

For more information, visit www.nhsunflower.com.

Contact Managing News Editor Kimberley Haas at Kimberley.Haas@townsquaremedia.com.

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