Apple Festival warms up with Youth Day, decorating contest

Published 8:57 am Tuesday, September 17, 2019

NILES — With most of the court of honor selected, the Four Flags Area Apple Festival is just around the corner, and Apple Festival board members are inviting the community to participate in some pre-festival festivities.

Apple Festival Youth Day kicks of the fun

As a precursor to the big event, youth throughout the community will have a chance to eat some treats and enjoy some fun Saturday at the annual Youth Day.

Festivities begin at 8:30 a.m. with a trike race in the Ring Lardner parking lot. Children ages 2 through 7 may participate.

At 10:30 a.m., the youngest members of the Apple Festival court of honor will be selected. Prince and princess candidates ages 5 to 8 may pre-register to be entered into a random drawing. The drawing will take place on the Apple Festival grounds.

As their first acts of royalty, the newly appointed prince and princess, as well as the older courts and many other youth organizations, will participate in a miniature version of the Grande Parade, which traverses the streets from Eastside Park to the Apple Festival grounds, stepping off at 1 p.m.

Following the parade, children can participate in free games and eat free hot dogs, chips and cotton candy.

For more information about Youth Day or the Four Flags Area Apple Festival, visit

Businesses invited to participate in

Apple Festival Window Decorating Contest

The Apple Festival is encouraging downtown businesses to show their love for all things apple.

The Apple Festival will once again host its window decorating contest, encouraging downtown businesses to deck out their storefronts to set the mood for the annual Grande Parade, which will be Saturday, Sept. 28.

“All of our downtown businesses are invited to participate in the Apple Festival’s Window Decorating Contest,” said Cindy Klingerman, window decorating contest coordinator. “Any apple theme is encouraged. If they can include our theme that is great, too.”

This year’s theme is Apple Festival Celebrates Michigan.

Windows should be decorated before 1 p.m. Sept. 26, at which point a panel of judges will cast votes on their favorite window decorations. The first-place winner will receive $100, second-place $75 and third-place $50.

There is no registration necessary to participate, but participating businesses are welcome to notify Klingerman they will be participating — or reach out with questions — via email at or by phone at (269) 240-3981.

Entrants sought for lip sync contest

Each year, people from all over southwest Michigan don costumes, create handmade props and get their groove on for the Apple Festival’s annual lip sync contest. With low participation so far, coordinators are seeking more entrants to sign up, especially in the 13- to 17-year-old age group.

Organizers will host a second review day at 2 p.m. this Sunday in the Apple House, located on the Apple Festival grounds. Participants will be asked to perform their act in full costume with props, just as they would during the performance.

While the lip sync contest is scheduled for 1 p.m. Sept. 29, the Apple Festival requires all acts to be reviewed prior to the live contest to be sure all acts are appropriate for families to view.

Prizes are $400 for first place, $200 for second places and $100 for third.