AMONG THE LOCAL artists who once again have donated their original works to benefit the silent auction and art raffle at the annual Apple Festival on Saturday, Sept. 23 are (from left): Anna Wong, Susanne Korn, Wendy Webster and Louise Anderson. (Ginny Mills Photo)


NORTH READING — The annual Apple Festival, a fall staple in North Reading, returns this Saturday, September 23, from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Putnam House grounds on Bow Street. The rain date is Sunday, September 24.

The Apple Festival is a fundraiser sponsored by the North Reading Historical and Antiquarian Society to help preserve and restore North Reading’s historic buildings. During this family-friendly festival visit the booths of a variety of local vendors and community groups, view works of local artists, sample great foods, enjoy games and pony rides for the kids, listen to great music, and experience wonderful local performances by dancers and martial artists.

The annual event will also include free tours of the historic buildings, including the namesake 1720 Rev. Daniel Putnam House, the Sgt. Flint House, and the one-room West Village School, where the original artwork donated by 16 local artists for the silent auction and raffle will be on display.  Be sure to also check out the First Meeting House, the Farm Museum, and the Tin and Cobbler’s shop, all of which were restored by members of the North Reading Co. of Minit & Militia over many decades. Their most recent additions are the flagpole – restored from a section of the pole that originally stood atop the Town Common – and the Van Latham windmill, which is currently being rebuilt and restored. Stop by for a burger and chips cooked to order by the Minitmen and help support their preservation projects.


The Historical Society invites all bakers in town, young and old, to showcase their talents in the annual apple pie bake-off (See official rules below). Pie entries are compared for appearance, texture, and taste by a panel of judges in a blind taste test. Judging begins at 11 a.m. on Festival day.

Winners and runners up are announced at noon during the Apple Festival. They are presented with ribbons and awards (and bragging rights), and also get their photo taken for publication in the Transcript!

Immediately after winners and runners up are announced, the pies are sliced and available for a nominal fee, either plain or with a scoop of Richardson’s ice cream.


  • Contest is open to North Reading residents only
  • Youth entrants must be between 12-17
  • Adult entrants must be at least 18 years of age
  • Pies must be made from scratch
  • Top and bottom crusts are required – no crumb crusts
  • No nuts, raisins, cranberries, or other fruits are allowed
  • Pies must be at room temperature
  • Lattice pastry work, decorative cutouts, and decorations with food coloring and/or sugars are permitted
  • Attach a 3” x 5” card to the bottom of the entry pie containing the entrant’s name, address, phone number, and age (adults only need to confirm that they are at least 18)

Deliver pies to the Rev. Daniel Putnam House (27 Bow Street) between 8 –10 a.m. on Festival day.

If using a non-disposable pie plate, make a notation on the 3” x 5” card that it is to be returned to you. Pie plates must be picked up by 3 p.m. on Festival day.


Please note that times and performers are subject to change

10:15AM: North Reading High School Band

10:45AM: NOTEorious a cappella

11:15AM: Senior Echoes

11:45AM: North Reading School of Ballet

12:20PM: Open

12:50PM: Master Shin Martial Arts Institute

1:20PM: Open

1:50PM: Cervizzi’s Martial Arts Academy.