Applefest, one of the oldest festivals in Southeastern MN, celebrates 72 years in 2021. In addition to typical festival activities, we will have orchard tours, a bean bag tournament, royalty coronation, 5k run/walk, & apple pie slices. The King Apple Parade on Sunday at 1pm is the highlight of the weekend.
The La Crescent Apple Festival was founded in September 1949 by Ralph Jones and Mel Hickenbotham, with the purpose of promoting La Crescent, its apple industry, and “putting La Crescent on the map”.
The initial planning session was held just two weeks prior to the fest. The first Apple Festival was a huge success, drawing a crowd of nearly 20,000 people and was just a sample of what was to come, as the festivals have grown in size and quality every year. The Apple Festival was incorporated in 1958 with a seven-member board. It has grown to allow for a maximum board of 42.
Apple Festival Inc. is a not-for-profit organization. Board members donate their time and pay their own expenses. All profits made from the festivals are given back to the community for various projects. The Apple Festival, Inc. was instrumental in the building of the swimming pool and the youth hockey warming house. They have purchased beepers for the fire department, playground equipment, build a tennis court, and other numerous projects.
Famous banquet speakers over the years have included visits by ABC news broadcaster Paul Harvey in 1957 and 1961. In addition to Paul’s visit in 1961, Minnesota Governor Elmer Anderson and Miss USA, Minnesota’s Barbara Peterson also attended.
Admission: $5 – $8
Days/Hours Open: Thu 11am‑10pm, Fri 11am‑12:30am, Sat 7:30am‑12:30am, Sun 7:30am‑6pm
Address: 520 S. 14th Street, La Crescent, MN 55947
Entertainment: 1 stage – Regional, Local. Music.
Other Activities: parade Sunday 1pm, childrens activities, carnival, orchard tours, royalty coronation.