Labor Day Weekend is fast approaching, which means a lot of people will be escaping the city for one last summer vacation. Usually I stay around town to take advantage of the now relatively empty city. But sometimes it is good to get away.
Looking to get outside of the city this weekend? Consider a trip to Hendersonville — just two hours away — for the N.C. Apple Festival, which runs Sept. 2-5.
My mother retired in Hendersonville and has raved about the festival as something I should check out. So I went out there recently to learn what it’s all about.
Hendersonville shuts down Main Street to vehicle traffic for four days and celebrates everything apples. There’s the festival itself, concerts and the event concludes Monday with a parade.
Why celebrate apples? There are approximately 200 apple growers in Henderson County, according to the festival website, and N.C. ranks seventh in apple production in the U.S., according to the N.C. Department of Agriculture.
I stopped by Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard in Hendersonville, which will be one of the vendors selling everything from apple cider to apple butter to these apple cider doughnuts, which are made on site. I can attest to their deliciousness.
I’m lucky that I can crash with Mom for a night or two. But if you need a place to stay, The Waverly Inn is a bed and breakfast just a block away from the festival.
It has been around since 1898 and has 15 rooms decorated in Victorian style.
Owners Mike and Tracey Burnette say they are planning a traditional Bluegrass concert Sunday night on the porch.
They also serve a farm-to-table breakfast cooked fresh every morning in their 36 seat breakfast room.
As of earlier this week, they still have various vacancies over the weekend.
I’m looking forward to a great weekend. Hope you have a great one, too.
Photos: Courtesy of David Nicholson, N.C. Apple Festival; Jonathan Lee