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Relish in ‘A Taste of the Country’

The 2013 Olde Tyme Apple Festival in Versailles celebrates ‘Best Festival’ win in Rural Missouri Magazine’s Reader’s Choice contest

The winners of the 2012 Olde Tyme Apple Festival King and Queen contest – Jacob Vogt and Tiffany Lor – enjoy sharing in their victory as they ride in the 2012 Apple Festival parade in Versailles.

The winners of the 2012 Olde Tyme Apple Festival King and Queen contest – Jacob Vogt and Tiffany Lor – enjoy sharing in their victory as they ride in the 2012 Apple Festival parade in Versailles. Photo by Samantha Edmondson.

For more than 30 years, the annual Olde Tyme Apple Festival in Versailles has seen visitors enjoy its numerous fun-filled activities and contests, delicious apple-inspired and old-fashioned food, and true small town event aura.

It has grown in popularity attracting thousands of attendees from across the state and beyond, and in 2012, the Olde Tyme Apple Festival received an honor that exemplifies why it continues to be one of the most beloved festivals in the Lake Area.

Last year through a Reader’s Choice Contest, the Olde Tyme Apple Festival was named “Best Festival” in Rural Missouri Magazine, which is the official publication of the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives.

“When over a half a million people have a chance to vote on their favorite festival in rural Missouri and our festival wins first place, I am all smiles. As president of the Versailles Area Chamber of Commerce for nine years, this first place award is a huge reward,” Dykzeul previously told The Lake today in his “Around the Lake” column. “On Apple Festival is immediate satisfaction for the 364 days of planning. However, winning the prestigious award is an honor. This award is a direct reflection of our entire board of directors, our office director and all volunteers.”

“Versailles is ‘The Small Town That Can.’ So, to everyone who visited our 2012 festival, who volunteered, and to all of the voters, I want to thank you,” Dykzeul said.

It seems like it was meant to be the Olde Tyme Apple Festival won the award, as its 2013 theme, which was selected prior to the publication honor, is “A Taste of the Country.” With a few events on Thursday, Friday and Sunday, most activities for the Olde Tyme Apple Festival are held throughout the day on Saturday, Oct. 5 in downtown Versailles.

On Thursday, Apple Festival guests can enjoy a carnival, sponsored by the Versailles Lions Club and put on by Bluff City Shows, at the Morgan County Fairgrounds.

The carnival will include a variety of rides, food, a midway and other activities. The carnival is open from 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday nights, and from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday. Also on Thursday, guests can see the opening night of the 2013 Apple Festival Musical, “Thoroughly Modern Millie” at 7 p.m. in the Royal Theatre.

The pre-festival activities start on Friday, Oct. 4 with the crowning of the King and Queen of the Festival at the Morgan County Courthouse, an apple pie baking contest, a presentation of the musical "Thoroughly Modern Millie" at the Royal Theatre and a car cruise and Sock Hop at Sonic Drive-In.

Versailles' Olde Tyme Apple Festival officially kicks off at 6:30 a.m. Saturday with a Pancake Breakfast at the Westminster Presbyterian Church. The 5-K and Super Senior 5-K runs at 7 a.m., as well as the Two-Mile Walk at 7:15 a.m. and Half-Mile Kids Fun Run at 8:15 a.m. will take place Saturday at the Versailles High School.

The Fun Zone for Kids will be open at 9 a.m. along North Monroe Street and boasts pony rides, bounce houses, face painting and other children’s activities. Also at 9 a.m., about 300 vendors will open in downtown Versailles for Saturday’s festival, remaining open until 5 p.m.

The Olde Tyme Apple Festival parade is full of clowns, Shriners, bands, floats, horses, emergency and law enforcement vehicles, and more. The parade begins at 10 a.m. and travels from Brown Road east to Highway 52, then down Newton Street to the Courthouse Square and then south on Fisher Street, west on Jasper Street, and then south on Monroe Street and DeKalb Street.

Apple-themed events include an apple sculpture contest for artists and an Apple Pie Baking Contest Auction where festival-goers can buy some of the award-winning contest pies. Other events and activities during the day include the Car Show (at Versailles City Park), a Tractor and Engine display (located along Newton Street), street musicians, and the famous Olde Tyme Apple Festival Fiddler’s Contest at 1 p.m. at the Royal Theatre.

Festival attendees, depending on their interests, can choose their own festival finale at 7 p.m. - either a Compact Figure 8 Race at the Morgan County Fairgrounds on Highway 52 or an encore showing of "Thoroughly Modern Millie" at the Royal Theatre.

A post-festival Olde Tyme Apple Festival Golf Tournament is also scheduled for noon Sunday, Oct. 6, at Rolling Hills Country Club, located at the junction of Highways 52 and 5. If festival-goers did not get a chance to see “Thoroughly Modern Millie” they an still see one of three performances starting at 7 p.m. Oct. 10-12 at the Royal Theatre.

In addition, visitors will be welcomed to the Apple Festival with this year’s metal Apple Festival structure, crafted by a local metal fabricator. It will sit at the junction of Highways 52 and 5.

“The metal sculpture .... is a standing symbol of our town’s festival and community togetherness throughout the year until the next selected apple structure is put up before next year’s event,” Dykzeul previously told The Lake Today.

The first Olde Tyme Apple Festival at Versailles was held in 1980 with a modest attendance and about 50 vendors. Since then, the festival has blossomed to become one of the largest and most well attended one-day family festivals in Missouri.

For more information about the Olde Tyme Apple Festival or the pre-festival and post-festival activities, contact the Versailles Chamber of Commerce at 573-378-4401 or visit VersaillesChamber.com.

2013 Apple Festival Schedule of Events

Thursday, Oct. 3

7 p.m. – “Thoroughly Modern Millie” play, The Royal Theatre

Friday, Oct. 4

5:30 p.m. – King and Queen crowning, Morgan County Courthouse

5:30-7:30 p.m. – Apple Pie Baking Contest entries, Morgan County Courthouse

6 p.m. – Baby Dumplings, Apple Tarts Contest, First Baptist Church

6:30 p.m. – Apple Dumplin’ and Darlin’ Contest, First Baptist Church

6:30 p.m. – Cruise Night – Sonic Drive-In

7 p.m. – “Thoroughly Modern Millie” play, The Royal Theatre

7-11 p.m. – Sock Hop and Car Cruise-in, Sonic Drive-In

Saturday, Oct. 5

6:30-9 a.m. – Pancake Breakfast, Westminster Presbyterian Church

7 a.m. – Parade Check-in, Petty & Fairgrounds roads

7 a.m. – 5K, Super Senior 5K runs, Versailles High School

7:15 a.m. – Two-mile walk, Versailles High School

8:15 a.m. – Half-mile Kids Fun Run, Versailles High School

8 a.m. –noon – Car Show Registration, Versailles City Park

9 a.m. – Fun Zone for Kids opens, North Monroe Street

9 a.m. – Craft, Vendor booths open, downtown Versailles

9 a.m. – Tractor & Engine display, Newton Street

10 a.m. – Parade starts, Brown Road and Highway 52

11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. – German dinner, Grace Lutheran Church

Noon – Pie-baking contest auction, Monroe/Jasper streets

1-4 p.m. – Museum open for tours, Monroe Street

1 p.m. – Old Tyme Fiddler’s Contest, The Royal Theatre

5 p.m. – Craft booths close, downtown Versailles

7 p.m. – “Thoroughly Modern Millie” play, The Royal Theatre

7 p.m. – Compact Figure-8 Race, Fairgrounds at Highway 52

Sunday, Oct. 6

Noon – Apple Festival Golf Tournament, Rolling Hills Country Club

Thursday, Friday, Saturday Oct. 10-12

7 p.m. – “Thoroughly Modern Millie” play, The Royal Theatre

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