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Apple Blossom Festival returning this weekend

Adams County's blooming apple orchards are ready for the 61st annual Apple Blossom Festival this weekend.

Organized by the Adams County Fruit Growers Association, the event encourages people not only to visit the orchards, but also to learn all about growing fruit.

Each year, the first weekend of May is dedicated to the festival. The planning begins right after the end of the last year's event, said Apple Blossom Festival Coordinator Brenda Cressler.

The festivities will launch the new agritourism season, which will kick off at the opening ceremony Saturday at 10 a.m. at the Apple Seed Stage.

The season involves full-bloom apple trees and the start of fruit production, as well as the Adams County Fruit Growers Association offering bus tours for people to help them understand the orchards and duties of a farmer, Cressler said.

Guests can enjoy wine, chocolate and cheese tastings and hard cider while visiting handmade craft vendors at the 61st Apple Blossom Festival. Growers will also sell farm-fresh products, such as peanut butter and juices, and, for the first time this year, provide samples.

An array of activities are also available for children, such as a petting zoo, tractor pulls, a bounce house, puppet shows and an educational scavenger hunt with a prize at the end.

While the kids are participating in their fun, adults can take part in the entertainment portion including music, magic, dance and more.

But the festival wouldn't be complete without the crowning of a new Apple Queen and two Apple Princesses. Students from an Adams County high school will compete for the crown, and the winners will be announced during the coronation ceremony Sunday at 2:30 p.m.

"It's just good fun, good food and plenty of apple stuff and things for the kids," Cressler said. "It's a lot of fun to start out the season and get people in the spirit."

For the active apple lover, the fruit growers association will also host a 6K orchard fun run that takes runners through the scenic fruit belt in Adams County on Sunday.

If you go 

What: Apple Blossom Festival

When: May 7 and 8, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. rain or shine

Where: South Mountain Fairgrounds, 615 Narrows Road, Biglerville

Cost: $5 for adults, free for children under 12

6K Run/Walk

When: May 8 at 8:30 a.m.

Where: South Mountain Fairgrounds, 615 Narrows Road, Biglerville

To register: Visit and search "Apple Blossom Festival 6K"

Cost: $30 pre-registration or $40 on-site