Saturday's sporadic rain only made things that much fresher down on the farm.

The 3rd annual Harvest Fest fundraiser at Wakeman Town Farm combined food and drink, much of it locally harvested, with raising money to help support programs at the town-owned agricultural center on Cross Highway.

"This happened last year, but the sun always shines on Wakeman Town Farm," said Mike Aitkenhead, farm steward and program director.

"This fundraiser really sort of determines the course of the farm," he said, noting that this year the event targeted the farm's Raise the Roof campaign, whose goal is to create indoor classroom space, including a teaching kitchen.

"It's so that we can really ramp up our programs," Aitkenhead said.

"We sold out," said Christy Colasurdo, publicity director, noting that the 225 tickets went quickly. "Every year we basically sell out immediately."

More than 100 volunteers helped make it happen, along with donations from local farmers, meat and cheese vendors, liquor retailers and chefs. The evening, which the farm hoped would generate close to $40,000, also included an auction.

"Love it, love it, love," Westporter Leslie Boxer said of the event. "It brings everyone together. Everything's delicious. It shows off what the farm does and it's just a nice community thing."

Along with many Staples High School and Norwalk Community College students, a handful of town figures helped manage the event.

"We're just helping out another nonprofit," said Tony McDowell, executive director of Earthplace.

"I think it's great, everything that they're doing here," said Ashley Constantino, 14, whose great-grandmother, Pearl Wakeman, was a founder of the farm. "The community is so involved."

"This is where I grew up," said Jeanne Wakeman Mann of Hamden, Pearl's granddaughter.

"It's fabulous to come back and see all this," she said.