35th a perfect festival year

Published 4:46 am Monday, October 1, 2007

By By ERIKA PICKLES / Niles Daily Star
NILES – It was a record breaking year for the 35th annual Niles Four Flags Apple Festival as perfect weather, great food and thrilling rides attracted a record number of local residents and out-of-towners.
"It was a record year all around," Pat Teeter, board member of the Apple Festival said Monday morning.
Teeter thanked excellent weather for the turn-out and said she heard great responses from the concession workers as well as the arts and crafts vendors.
"They all showed interest in coming back next year," Teeter said.
The Grande Parade was a hit as always, and those in attendance enjoyed fabulous floats, plenty of laughing and a handful of candy.
"We love parades and the Apple Festival Parade is one we rarely miss," Debbie Connell of South Bend, Ind. said. Connell sat up her family's chairs and blankets by Rite Aid two hours early to get a good seat. "It gets packed and if you wait too late you're out of luck," she said.
This year's theme, "Good Ol' Days of Festival" turned back the hands of time as many floats were decked out in decorations from a certain decade.
The Girl Scout Troop No. 796 and 797 wore tie-dyed shirts, hung a disco ball from their float and boogied to popular hits of the 1970s.
Earlier Saturday morning, the arts and crafts were jam-packed with people buying antiques, unique home decorations and yummy homemade dips.
Rosco the Clown was very popular with everyone.
"Do the pool one again," 8-year-old Josh Linvet said while anxiously jumping up and down. Rosco carried a whistle and would blow it and tell everyone to "get back in the pool."
"He is so funny," Linvet said.
Sunday was another great day as the 18th annual Lip Sync Contest and the Apple Pie Eating contests took place and wrapped up a great weekend.
In the 7-12-year-old age group, Alison Oler, Madison Oler and Rachel Hayes took first place for their funny skit of "I Farted on Santa's Lap."
Props included a Christmas Tree, a kitchen set-up and, yes, Santa himself (or herself).
In the 13-17 year old category, Kate and Libby Hein took first for their performance of "Popular" by Wicked and Gabrielle and Debra Parrish took first place in the 18 and older category with their performance of the song "Girlfriends" by Chonda Piers.
After the show, the pie eating contest featured 72 participants who dove head first into baked pies.
Fair-goers stayed until the last few hours wound down at the festival. Teeter said the festival saw no major problems this year.
"That's something we take pride in. we have a great safety record all around and Skerbeck is one of the best carnivals around," Teeter said.
Results for all of the contests will be available later this week, and Teeter said all money raised goes back into the festival, as it always does.