One of West Virginia’s most anticipated fall festivals returns this week, October 6–9, in Salem at Depot Park. The Salem Apple Butter Festival is entering its 32nd year with a full line-up of events each day.
Over the four days of the festival, thousands will visit the grounds and partake in the various family friendly activities. Admission to the event is free, including the nightly entertainment and contests.
The Apple Butter Festival features live demonstrations of old-fashioned apple butter making, complete with copper kettles suspended over a wood-burning fire and apple butter canned for visitors to purchase. The event also hosts apple butter and apple pie contests, a quilt show, pageants for all ages, cutest pet contest, and a car show among other activities.
Starting Thursday and running through Sunday, live bands will take to the pavilion or main stage to entertain attendees with the sounds of music. Both regional and nationally known groups will perform throughout the afternoon and evening. Visit the festival schedule for a complete line up. A few of the bands include Ray Hileman & Wheels of Country, Jim Bunch & Depot House Band, John Henry Band, and Out of Eden, an Eagles tribute band.
Thursday also brings the opening of many attractions such as the Doddridge Co. 4-H petting zoo, quilt show, and the presentation of festival royalty. Many of those events continue on Friday, along with the Pet Show-Off competition at 5:30 pm and Bingo at the Pavilion at the same time.
If you’re looking for a full day of Apple Butter festivities, plan your visit for Saturday, October 8. The day kicks off with the Sam Warner Memorial 5K at 9:00 am, followed by the grand festival parade at noon. Traffic will be shut down from the Main St. side of K. Duane Hurley Blvd. After that, a full slate of events includes the amateur talent show open to four different age groups, celebrity auction, and corn hole and horseshoe tournaments. The day is topped off with a fireworks display immediately following the close of the evening’s entertainment at 10:30 pm.
And finally, the last day of the 2016 festival is one for the books. The Arby “Buck” Morrison Memorial Car Show for classic, antique, and tuner cars opens at 12:30 pm in the upper parking lot of Salem International University. Shortly following that is the bicycle poker ride, a unique event where cyclists draw cards at points of interest along the route. The festival ends at 5:00 pm.