Lincolnton, NC – The apples are plentiful, and organizers of the 45th Lincoln County Apple Festival say that all is ready for the big event on Saturday, September 16, no matter what the weather is!

“If it rains, we will all get wet,” said Carole Howell, festival coordinator, “but the long-term forecast says it will be sunny and in the low 80s, so we’re counting on that.”

For eight city blocks, the Apple Festival will feature more than 50 craft vendors, more than 50 food vendors, a farmer’s market, an expanded children’s area, three stages, a section that focuses on agriculture in Lincoln County, and a very special new attraction.

Apple fest ECA Pie Sales“For 2017, we’re excited to present Destination Innovation: Manufacturing a Future That Works,” said Howell. She says that 20% of Lincoln County jobs are in manufacturing, and that includes truck parts and even tortilla chips. Visitors will be able to explore the businesses, learn about the technology and the training available, and can even apply for jobs on the spot. The feature is sponsored by Timken and the Lincoln County Economic Development Association.

Sir Purr of the Carolina Panthers will visit and pose for selfies from 11 until noon on the north side of the court house, and Conrad the Crawdad of the Hickory Crawdads will also pay a visit. Festivalgoers will have a chance to meet Ana Ochoa, the reigning Apple Queen.

“Of course, everyone wants to know where the apples are,” said Howell. Five local apple growers will take their places on East and West Main selling apples by the bag and by the bushel. You will also find apple fried pies, fritters, whole apple pies, apple kettle corn, cider, jelly, and candied apples just to name a few.

This year’s Apple Festival t-shirts ranging in size from 34T to 4XL will be available at both information booths as long as they last.

“Parking is in good supply at Lincolnton High School on N. Aspen Street and at Gaston College on S. Aspen,” said Howell. “The Lion’s Club will operate three lots on E. Sycamore, just a block off Main. We just ask you to leave your pets at home, please. Hot pavement is no place for paws.”

“The best place to find out what to see and do, where to park, and where to find a place to cool off is on our website,” she said.

“We suggest that you come hungry, wear comfortable shoes, and bring a wagon to carry home all the apples and crafts you’ll buy.”

To learn more, go to  or email

Photos: Top: The crowd at the 2016 Festival.

Bottom: Pies for sale! Visitors make a beeline to booth number C24 to make sure they get one of the hundreds of handmade apple pies crafted by the Lincoln County Extension and Community Association. The pies always sell out, and the money goes to the ECA’s outreach projects. Pictured left to right are ECA members Bea McCurry, Lucille Johnson, Judy Sackett, and Brenda Smith.