The Coombs Farmers’ Institute is hosting their third annual apple pressing event. Building on the success of previous years, the CFI has kicked things up a notch – the annual event has extended to a two-day fall festival.
People from all around the Parksville Qualicum Beach community are invited to head over to the Coombs Fairgrounds on Saturday, Oct. 5 and Sunday, Oct. 6.
Community members can bring apples and pears to be turned into juice (raw or pasteurized) using the juice press provided by Pressing Matter Mobile Juicer.
A minimum of 100 pounds of apples or pears are required per pressing. The CFI recommends getting together with neighbours and friends to pool resources.
“This is a great opportunity for friends and neighbours to gather resources and share apple juice,” said the CFI in a release.
It takes approximately 3.5 pounds of apples to create one litre of juice. For pasteurized juice, the cost of pressing is $8.50 per five-litre “bag in a box.” Raw juice is $1/litre provided that customers bring their own five-gallon food grade bucket.
All apples must be dropped off no later than noon, and access to the presser is first come, first served.
The yearly event started in 2017 when Janet Thorny, president of the Coombs Farmers’ institute, visited the Denman Island Apple Festival and saw that they were using a mobile apple press to turn apples into juice.
Previous years have been so successful that the event has turned into a two-day affair.
Even if you don’t have access to that much produce, there is still plenty to do at the free family-friendly event.
Both days will kick off with a pancake breakfast from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., hosted by the Arrowsmith Community Recreation Association.
Tiger Lily Farms will be hosting a mobile petting farm from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Saturday will see live music by John Hamel from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., and on Sunday the Old Time Fiddlers will play from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
There will also be a number of vendors on-site. Denman Island Heritage Apples will have more than 80 varieties of apples on display and available for taste-testing, as well as heritage apple trees for sale.
The Winery in Coombs will be on-site with wine, cider, port, and sparkling non-alcoholic juice. Microgreens, sprouts, tomatoes, and a variety of vegetables will be available from local producers.
Lovers of the arts should take note – there will be spinning demonstrations by local fibre artists as well as Carla Flegel and friends hosting live watercolour painting.
The event runs on both days from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.