Galesville's Apple Affair is a major event in Trempealeau County. Beginning in 1983 as part of Wisconsin's effort to promote the state's apple orchards, Apple Affair draws people, including families, from throughout the region.
Traditionally held on the square in downtown Galesville the first Saturday in October, Apple Affair is now a two-day event which begins with a spaghetti dinner at the Mill Road Banquet Center on Friday at 5 p.m. Bingo and a dance will also be offered at the same location.
The following morning, breakfast will again be served in the Big Tent on the Square. The omelets are cooked in one of the biggest skillets you'll ever see! It took 1,250 eggs, 30 pounds of ham, 10 cups of onions, 9 pounds of butter, 630 squares of apple coffee cake, 22 gallons of apple juice, 21 loaves of bread and 1,200 cups of coffee to feed the 630 people who attended the first event. Since then, attendance numbers in the thousands.
As the day wears on, the aroma wafting from the square changes to the smell of bratwurst cooking on the outdoor grill. In another big tent, Galesville's famous 10-foot apple pie tempts the taste buds as it bakes.
Orchards from the area set up stands on the square where visitors can purchase apples and apple treats served up by local growers. Apple pie, apple slices, caramel apples, Apple Normandy, Queen's Apple, apple cider, apple juice -- if it's apple, you'll find it here.
In the parking lot across from the square, artisans and crafters attract shoppers with everything from dollhouse miniatures to crocheted doilies to braided rugs to woodworking crafts. Click here for more information to register for a craft booth.
Throughout the day, music from the big tent permeates the air. Provided by area bands, the music is enjoyed by young and old alike.
Bike tours are a popular event on the Apple Affair roster. Hundreds of bicyclists spend most of the day touring Galesville's apple orchards on their bicycles. The scenery of this "Garden of Eden" is spectacular and the event is a perfect family affair. Register early to save money or you can register at Apple Affair.
The first Apple Affair attracted 42 bicyclists who rode the 28.7 mile loop from downtown Galesville through the orchards. The bike tours grew in popularity and some years, depending on weather, more than 700 bicyclists participated.
The most popular tour is the 20-mile orchard tour. Families like this tour because of its relatively flat terrain making it manageable for even young riders. The more challenging routes range in distance from 35 to 60 miles and include steep hills and rolling roads.
Bicycling isn't the only sporting event that day. Horseshoe tournaments at Horseshoe Park a block north of the square are always popular. The Trempealeau County Color Cruise XIV leaves Reception Park at 11 a.m. At 3 p.m., with a $2 ticket, you can participate in the Apple Race and watch your floating wooden apple travel from the Swinging Bridge to the Hwy 53 bridge. This year you can also follow the daily clues to search for the Silver Apple or stroll through the Flea Market held in the Bank of Galesville parking lot.
Other activities that day are the Open House at Eastside Farm with antique farm equipment on display, the Historical Exhibit at Old Main or meeting some of Galesville's most notable residents portrayed by local actors during the Cemetery Walk. Buses leave the downtown area regularly to take tour groups to the homestead or Old Main or Pine Cliff Cemetery.
Buttons for Apple Affair are on sale now in businesses all over Galesville. For a dollar, you get a souvenir button and the right to attend one of Trempealeau County's premiere family events. Buttons are also on sale at Apple Affair.
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