Black Sheep Gathering

BIG News!!

The Black Sheep Gathering announces a new partnership with Linn County Fairgrounds!

The 2018 BSG will convene June 29-July 1 at Linn County Fairgrounds in Albany, Oregon.

This year marks a new era at the 2018 Black Sheep Gathering, the 44th annual Gathering will be moving 45 miles north to Linn County Expo Center in Albany Oregon. Linn County Expo Center offered us a beautiful new facility with room to grow, modern amenities, and convenient camping and lodging options. All the events we've enjoyed for decades will still be part of the Gathering: three full days of workshops and classes; fabulous fleeces for public judging and sale; fiber arts and other competitions; and sheep and Angora goat shows that emphasize the beautiful fibers these animals produce. In recent years, you've lamented the separation of the animals and Marketplace, so with the Expo Center layout, all of our events will be easily accessible, connected by a grassy courtyard where we'll be able to sit, socialize, spin, work on fiber projects, and gather for our Saturday Potluck. And after dinner, we'll move right next door for the Spinners' Lead, where you can enter your masterpiece, be entertained by the animals and handlers, and gain inspiration from seeing the items their fleeces produced.

Daily schedules will be available at the information booth, right inside the front doors of the Willamette Event Center, where many of the events like the Fleece Show and Sale, Sheep-to-Shawl, Fiber Arts Show, Educational Talks and Demonstrations, the Marketplace and some Workshops will be located. Some of the workshops will require a 5-minute stroll to the hotels or the Santiam Building just next door to the Willamette Event Center, so be prepared for a short, easy walk. You can even take a walk through the Demonstration garden on the way!

The spacious and airy Cascade Livestock Barn will hold all of our alpaca, sheep, and goat exhibitors. Be sure to stop by to see all of these beautiful wool-producing animals. Many of the producers have booths that highlight their products so you can buy local, straight from the farm.

This year, we will also welcome the 7th Annual Bluefaced Leicester National Show. You'll be able to find some fabulous Bluefaced (BFL) fleeces along with all the other sheep, mohair, and alpaca fleeces in the nationally renowned Fleece Show and Sale, located in the Willamette Event Center.

Camping and lodging are conveniently located on-site, and RV camping registration is available through the Linn County Expo Center. A hundred recreational vehicle (RV) sites, with and without electricity, are available as well as tent camping, and two hotels are located on-site. And if these options are not enough, numerous other hotels nearby are available. Details about lodging and camping are available Here.

As always, admission and parking at the Gathering are free. Bring your family and friends and take part in one of the most unique events in the country celebrating natural-colored animals and their fiber. Please remember, no dogs, other than Service Dogs, are allowed; however, Service Dogs are restricted from the animal areas for the safety of animals and participants. The Black Sheep Gathering is an all-volunteer organization that welcomes your suggestions, participation, and assistance. For information on specific events, to volunteer or to offer suggestions, please contact any of the committee workers listed on the contacts page.


Judge: Zane Bone
College Station, Texas

I am a 4th generation sheep and goat raiser from the Texas Hill Country. My father was a state winning sheep and goat vocational agricultural teacher; my mom was also from a ranching background. Read More.


Judge: Dr. Andy Laughlin
Lubbock, Texas

Dr. Andy Laughlin grew up in the rural town of Ingram, Texas located in the heart of the hill country. He received his bachelor's degree in animal science from Texas A & M Univerisity. Read More.


Wool Judge: Dr. Geof Ruppert
Fairfield, Pennsylvania

Your judge for the 2018 Black Sheep Gathering is Dr. Geof Ruppert. His involvement with sheep began in 1976 with a starter flock of Corriedales, chosen in part because of his mother’s interest in the fiber arts. Read More.


Judge: Marian Dyche
The Dalles, Oregon

I learned to spin when I moved to Oregon about 20 years ago, joined the Columbia Fibres Guild and also learned to live life as it really should be. Read More.