BY JESSICA HAMMER
The aroma of apple fritters and other wonderful delicacies filled the cool, crisp fall air in Wellesley, Ont. on Sept. 26.
Wellesley’s Apple Butter and Cheese Festival, otherwise known as the ABC Festival, was celebrating its 40th anniversary.
The town’s main street, arena and roads were full of people from all over the region. The lines for apple fritters and dumplings were long but the delicious apple treats were well worth the wait. Clog dancers from Ontario Rhythm Cloggers entertained those waiting in line.
There were over 100 vendors in attendance and the Wellesley library had their annual book sale. A blacksmith demonstration and a 50-50 draw were added to the festival this year. “I thought everyone had lots of fun and there was something for everybody,” said Judy Johnson, a local resident.
Glen Smyth, the founder and CEO of Apple Flats, was one of the vendors at the festival. Along with selling crab apple jelly he was also featuring his new product, a crab apple cocktail mix.
“Just talking to people, the thing they would recognize is probably the apple butter and cheese. It’s something that’s important to the community,” Smyth said. “This festival is what brings people home.”
Approximately 35,000 people were at the festival this year.
“We’ve been very successful for the small town we are,” said Bob Reid, chairman of the ABC festival.
Proceeds from the event go toward many projects around town including the arena, park land and sewer systems. The most recent funding was spent on Google Chromebooks for the school.
For the festival’s anniversary, signs were put up around town with facts and information about the festival and the local businesses.