Meet cuddly critters during National Alpaca Farm Days

Farms across the country open to the public to get you up close and personal with alpacas.

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – For the past 15 years, the last weekend in September has been National Alpaca Farm Days. It’s a time when hundreds of farms all across North America open their doors to the public to show off what all the buzz is about.

In this case, “buzz” is literal. After all, the fleece that is collected from alpacas is their primary use as livestock.

“It is a luxury fiber”, explains Alpaca Owners Association Executive Director Robin Gifford. “It is not greasy like sheep. There’s a lot of lanolin in sheep’s wool. This makes it more eco-friendly to process because we don’t need the heavy detergents and as many washings.”

That’s part of the alpaca’s eco-friendly nature. They’re also good lawnmowers who won’t tear up the ground when they’re out and about. They don’t need much protein to stay healthy. Their… ahem… droppings… are pretty nice, too, as far as droppings go. They’re low on odor, which makes them perfect for your garden.

If you’re just looking to meet up with an alpaca, rather than own one, this is the weekend for you. You have a few choices near Lincoln. One of them is J P Acres, just outside of town. Owner Joel Armstrong has had alpacas for a few years now and has built up a lot of knowledge about these curious creatures. He also knows how to have fun while showing them off.

“Meet the animals and learn about them and have a good time”, says Joel. “They’ll get to walk them around and feed them a little bit. We have alpaca products for sale, and we have coloring pages, and we have a craft thing set up for everyone to have a good time.”

J P Acres is also the home of the alpaca picnic, so feel free to pack a lunch to enjoy with the animals.

To find the closest farm to you, and to learn more about the weekend’s events, click here.

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