How do you like them apples?

Published 10:04 pm Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Break out the recipes for pies, cobblers and cider, Magnolia United Methodist Church is holding it’s annual AppleFest.

From 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Oct. 31, the church parking lot will transform into a virtual orchard, selling and delivering hundreds of bushels of apples.

“We’re offering the same products as before,” said Connie Schubert, Apple Fest’s team manager for the church. “But last year we brought in over 1,000 bushels and we’re hoping to bring even more this year.”

The festival raises funds for the church and its outreach missions. Members will sell apples, cider and apple butter from some of Virginia best orchards.

Last year, the church brought in more than $12,000 through the apple sales –making it the largest fundraiser of the year.

Over the course of the past 19 years the church has held Apple Fest, it has become one of Magnolia’s most anticipated events, with customers calling months in advance to make sure they can get their orders in.

“It’s exciting,” Schubert said. “The more we make, the more we can send out to missions.”

All of the church’s proceeds are used to support various community organizations and programs, including the Genieve Shelter, Scouting organizations, mission scholarships, prison ministries, the Angel Tree program and Impact Suffolk.

Schubert added that this year, church members have reached out even more – putting more advertisements and information on the church’s and other Web sites as well as enlisting the help of local scout groups for the day of.

The deadline to order and pay for bushels or pecks of apples is Oct. 23, but customers who miss the deadline can still head to the church Saturday and order on the spot from surplus orders.

This year, the church will sell seven different types of apples: Fuji, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Stayman, Rome, Winesap and Granny Smith.

Additionally, the men of the church will make their Brunswick stew for sale, and there will be a bake sale and craft sale at the church as well.

“Every thing is going be under one tent,” Schubert said. “Everyone is going to be there together: the bake sale, the lunch, the crafts. We’ll all be more central.”

Schubert added that sales this year have already surpassed last year’s sales from this time.

“That’s exiting for us because we’re seeing that folks are coming back and spreading the word. It looks like people are really looking forward to it.”