Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Going Local-Lincoln County Apple Festival

This past Saturday was our hometown's annual
Lincoln County Apple Festival.
This event usually takes place in mid-September,
but Hurricane Florence forced it to be rescheduled.
Since 1972, Lincolnton has been celebrating our apple heritage,
with booths hosted by cooks, bakers, candy makers, crafters and more.
Our small town of 10,000 swells to 80,000 people,
as folks enjoy this quaint, rural tradition.

It was an honor to be part of the display hosted by the Master Gardeners.
About a dozen of us put together two informational areas,
so that visitors could learn more about Extension Services.
This region of the festival is called "Ag City".
In this booth, Master Gardeners answered all kinds of questions about gardening,
as well as offering up free flower and vegetable seeds to get folks started.
What a beautiful display for guests to enjoy.

This incredible presentation about straw bale gardening
absolutely blew me away!
Our resident artist (who was also a member of my graduating class),
put together this amazing model.
Not only did it perfectly explain what might be an unfamiliar method,
but the scale seemed to appeal to the smallest gardeners to boot!

At the other Extension table, a few of us were helping
with a Make-and-Take activity, especially geared to the younger set.
With an emphasis on recycling and repurposing in the garden,
we provided seed pots made from toilet paper rolls,
soil and free seeds to budding gardeners.
The kids were able to get their own garden started in seconds flat.
We also encouraged visitors to think about using discarded items for pots,
including egg and yogurt containers, milk jugs, even gourds.

Another display we offered was specifically on square foot gardening.
One of our members did a stellar job at fashioning a model bed,
and another provided the carrots to fit into the square.
Many times over, we heard how folks were challenged with the clay soil here,
and this offered them an alternative, so that they can keep right on growing!
Overall, we were quite pleased with the turnout,
and felt that we made an impact on those who stopped by.

This down-home event is anticipated for months,
and the fact that the weather wasn't ideal didn't seem to matter one bit.
It was the first time I had attended,
and I certainly look forward to being a part of it next year.
Along with the "Ag City" section of the fair,
there were plenty of local artisans selling their wares.

Carolina Tye Dyes offered up unique t-shirts for the fashion conscious.
With a wonderful array of colors to choose from
and reasonable prices, this local company could surely have the crowd dressed in style!
Who doesn't need a little of the 60's in their life?

Ron & Jill Reinhardt, from right around the corner in Vale,
showcased their beautiful rustic furniture.
Wouldn't one of these cupboards be perfect for storing
all of your homemade preserves and canned goods?
Although they don't have a website,
they can be reached at 704-276-3257.

I have to admit, I was so tempted to buy one of these festive fall signs.
These are crafted by Michael Hoffman, out of Denver, NC,
and he is a regular contributor to local craft fairs.
He also has a wide assortment of charming bird houses and feeders,
and other handmade treasures.
His website can be found here,
or call him at 704-748-9717.
His story is worth reading, I highly recommend it.

When we learned about this artist, we were gobsmacked!
This ceramic master, not only creates these gorgeous and useful pieces of art,
but he also uses the clay from his own land!

Talk about buying local!
You can reach Robert at 704-735-5946.

It's always astonishing to witness the creativity some folks have.
Take for instance, these milk crate storage units,
exhibited by Todd and Tina at INCRATEABLES.
Especially if there are kids in the picture,
there is never enough storage for all their stuff.
This is a fantastic solution and so unique!
This husband and wife team can be reached at 828-241-9242.

These yard sculptures are something I hope to someday add to our garden.
K & R Metal Works, out of Newton, provided some great options.
Ronnie & Kelly's facebook page can be found here.

You had me at Mayberry.

Foot Hills Wood Crafts displayed an assortment of hand-carved scenes.
Each one is completed using only a scroll saw and a steady hand.
Rodney Helms, the artist, is located in Cherryville
and can be reached at 704-435-4103.

Another local business offered up honey and elderberry syrup.
When I say local, 
I     mean    local.
Come to find out, 
this vendor is actually my neighbor and lives just a few doors down.
I've seen their hives in the backyard,
and it was good to officially meet them!
If we need honey in the future,
we may need only venture steps away.
Feel free to peruse their darling website.

What a rewarding day it was,
being able to be of service
and sharing our love of gardening with others.
It's easy to see why so many visitors flock to this event.

What local hometown events do you fancy?

Other Posts in the Going Local Series:
Faith Family Farm
Black Mountain Chocolates
Red Wolf Farm

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