This year’s Falmouth Goat Race was canceled due to muddy field conditions, but the Falmouth Civic Association is already making plans for next year’s race.
Although the weather was nice on Saturday, Sept. 29, the ground had not dried out from previous severe storms and smaller rainfall events, leaving the fields at Governor Stables Park in no condition for the annual event, which began decades ago as a practical joke.
The event had its roots in a conversation between some friends in Falmouth who jokingly came up with the idea to race their pet goats. One of them took the joke a step beyond that by buying a newspaper advertisement with another friend’s phone number promoting what was then a nonexistent race. But after many people phoned for more information, the friends decided they might as well actually hold the race.
Now the race is organized by the Falmouth Civic Association, which also organizes an Easter egg hunt in the park every spring and has raised money for improvements to the park including playground equipment, bleachers, benches and a kitchen in the park pavilion.
Brian Putt, who is active with the civic group, installed a new sign promoting the goat race on Monday, Oct. 1. The sign at the intersection of Turnpike Road and state Route 441 is atop a brick planter and promotes Falmouth as the home of the goat race year-round. Putt said it is frequently used as a landmark when giving driving directions.
“That’s been viewed well over a million times in its lifetime,” Putt said of the old sign, which he estimated has been there about 20 years. But with the sign showing considerable wear, Putt got Wolfpack Graphix near Middletown to make new sign boards. Putt said he didn’t want to ask Conoy Township to pay for the new sign boards or to use the Falmouth Civic Association’s budget, so he asked local businesses for help. He said other than B&G Lumber of Elizabethtown, all the businesses that helped are local to Falmouth: Red Hill Farm Market, D.L. Burkett Excavation, Landis Veterinary Services, Cole Strickler Pressure Washing, Wonders Custom Meats, Sunset Industries and Putts Services.
“None of these are real big businesses,” Putt said, but they are local and wanted to help.
“They enjoy sponsoring the community and that’s a big plus for me,” Putt said.