Busti Apple Festival A Success In Spite Of Unseasonable Heat

The 43rd annual Busti Apple Harvest Festival was held at the grounds shared by the Busti Historical Society and Busti Fire Department with great success Sunday. P-J photos by Gavin Paterniti

BUSTI — With a series of demonstrations and a row of white-topped vendor tents lining Lawson Road, the yearly Busti Apple Harvest Festival again proved to be one of the area’s largest community events.

Now in its 43rd year, the festival welcomed thousands of area residents to participate in a number of activities, witness a variety of demonstrations, tour some of the longstanding structures on the grounds shared by the Busti Historical Society and Busti Fire Department, learn local history and browse through the handmade wares of more than 80 individual vendors.

As the direct successor to the Busti Pioneer Crafts Festival, the original crafts festival in Western New York, the Busti Apple Festival was founded on a previously-established reputation for residents far and wide as being a premier venue for the sale of unique and homemade crafts, wares and food. Within a few years, the festival had grown to include a large farmer’s market of locally grown apples. Homemade apple pies and apple cider are also major draws to the event.

Always held on the final Sunday of September, the apple festival has consistently proven to be successful year after year. Though this year was one of the warmer on record since the festival’s inception, temperatures in the low- to mid-80s did little to deter the strong and steady flow of foot traffic that one would come to expect after having visited in previous years.

According to Judy Schultz, a lifelong member of the historical society and the festival’s demonstrations coordinator, the Busti Apple Festival is a communitywide effort that requires much planning, but always yields great dividends.

“This is a good community function in which neighbors meet neighbors,” Schultz said. “We appreciate that everybody comes out to this, even on an usual day such as this.”

Schultz added that the apple festival is also a history festival. It features an open house of the historical society’s museum, which includes photos and relics from Busti’s past, as well as tours of Busti Mill, which was constructed in the mid-19th century.

Admission proceeds from the festival are split between the historical society and fire department, as co-sponsors of the event, and additional money raised from food sales overseen by historical society members also go to the historical society.