FREEPORT – While thousands of people turned out to enjoy L.L.Bean’s 100th Anniversary fireworks show, for one woman and her farm animals, the event was “pure terror.”

Susan Campbell, who owns a 100-acre farm on Hunter Road, was concerned the fireworks – billed as the biggest show in the state – would cause her animals to stampede and hurt themselves.

Campbell was particularly concerned about a 30-year-old rescued pony prone to panic attacks. However, she said the pony survived, her cows didn’t not break down any fences, and the horses appear to be all right, though one was slightly limping.

“The pony a couple of times was gasping pretty heavily,” Campbell said. “Fortunately the pony didn’t have a respiratory arrest, which is what we were worried about.”

Campbell said she spent all week preparing her four horses and 10 cows for the event by playing loud music and turning on the barn lights at night. She also began giving them three kinds of calming medication in increasing doses.

But still, she said, the fireworks, which were launched the Pine Tree Academy on Pownal Road and from Morse Street in the village, were worse than she imagined, comparing it to a war zone.

“(The show) lit up the entire pasture like it was daytime,” she said. “It was just a constant barrage of shots coming from all around. (The animals have) no escape.”

Campbell collected 215 signatures in an effort to get L.L.Bean to shoot fireworks only from the Morse Street location, but L.L.Bean went through with plans to also launch fireworks from Pownal Road.

Staff Writer Randy Billings can be contacted at 791-6346 or at:

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Twitter: @randybillings