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Smithfield Apple Festival wraps up today

October 2, 2011
By DAVE GOSSETT - Staff writer ( , The Herald-Star

SMITHFIELD - Marilyn Walters expects to sell her final apple dumpling at approximately 4 p.m. today.

It will be the last of 825 apple dumpling Walters and her team of helpers prepared for this year's annual Smithfield Apple Festival.

"We usually work for about six days baking these dumplings. I set up a card table for the apple peelers. I am next making the dough and then I have more helpers who roll the dumplings," related Walters Saturday evening as she braved chilly temperatures and waited for the Apple Festival parade.

Article Photos

GRAND MARSHALS — Members of the Smithfield Fire Department served as Grand Marshals of the 39th annual Smithfield Apple Festival. The rain stopped in time for the Saturday evening parade and Main Street was lined with residents and visitors for the salute to apples of Jefferson County. The Apple Festival will continue today starting with a Community Church Service at 11 a.m. and concluding with the annual Great American Bed Race at 5 p.m. - Dave Gossett

The 39th annual Smithfield Apple Festival will wrap up today at 5 p.m. when the Great American Bed Race rolls down Main Street.

According to Smithfield Mayor Pat Freeland, the race usually has five or six racers who climb aboard an old fashioned iron bed, grabs onto the springs and urges four helpers who push and try to control the bed from the Smithfield Fire Station to the Vend It store.

"There's no mattress. You just have to hold onto the springs. And with someone on each corner of the bed it can be interesting at times," Freeland laughed.

"I am a little disappointed with the weather this year. A lot of the crafters who are usually here couldn't come out with the crafts in the rain. But it has stopped raining just in time for our parade," Freeland said.

"Next year we will talk about moving our Apple Festival to a different date so we can try to avoid this weather. This weekend is a great time for our Smithfield residents and former residents who come back to visit friends. It is also a good time to show off our community and to enjoy good entertainment and good food," Freeland remarked.

Garren McHugh and his fiancee Jennifer Kourim were wandering through the festival crowd, greeting family and friends and looking for the best place to watch the parade.

"I was hoping to see the Buckeye Local Marching Band because I played clarinet in the band when I was in school. But they couldn't make it today. But being here is a good time. You see a lot of people you know out here," noted Kourim.

McHugh recalled when he was in the parade as a Johnny Appleseed candidate 13-years ago.

"This is a chance to catch up with people I haven't seen for awhile," said McHugh.

It is also a chance for visitors to enjoy the friendliness of a village.

And watch John Domenick perform as a very friendly master of ceremonies in the middle of Main Street.

"Come on, it is going to rain soon so let's get this parade going. These fine people don't want to get wet waiting for you, And there's George Miller selling peanuts over there," Domenick called out.

The Apple Festival will continue today with Roz & Lynn performing on the stage from 1 until 2 p.m., Twice as Nice from 3 until 5 p.m. and the Great American Bed Race at 5 p.m.

"We usually have about six racers. But sometimes someone will see a friend racing and they will decide to compete in the race. It is a lot of fun for the bed racers as well as everyone watching them," declared Freeland.

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