BELFAST, Maine — It’s a city that for decades has been establishing a reputation as a midcoast Maine mecca for all that is organic, green and alternative, but Belfast hasn’t exactly been focusing on self-promotion.
It was high time for that to change, according to Janet Dutson, executive director of the Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce. That’s why the Chamber decided to hold the first-ever Good Life Fest on Saturday at the Belfast Armory, which featured talks on the burgeoning “slow birth movement,” the Belfast Cohousing and Eco-Village, and how elderberries can be an important part of any Mainer’s medicine chest.
“It seemed really Belfast,” Dutson said of the festival Saturday, as the crowd of exhibitors and attendees surged around her on their way to finding fresh seafood, information about home solar projects or even a midwife or two.
“We wanted to have an event that would really speak to the Belfast brand,” she said. “I’m very pleased.”
Members of the crowd had the chance to chat with dozens of vendors or to learn about how to retrofit a house for energy efficiency, make a spring tonic salad or attend the “Everything you ever wanted to know about composting toilets” presentation by The Green Store.
Becky Brimley of Belfast, who came with her family, said they were having a great time.
“We wanted to see some of our favorites, and see what was new,” she said, admiring the bumble bee that had just been painted on her toddler daughter’s face. “And get free food.”