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Apple Blossom celebration kicks off April 27
The Washington State Apple Blossom Festival in  1Wenatchee has drawn visitors from throughout the Northwest for many, many years and it just keeps getting better every year. The festival gets under way on April 27 and runs through May 7.

Springtime in Wenatchee is really quite special. The apple blossoms are out, the skies are generally blue and the temperatures are inching up to the 60s and 70s.And, when the Apple Blossom Festival arrives, the people in this part of the state are just ready for a big celebration.

The highlight, of course, is the big grand parade this year held on May 6, but there's a lot going on in the 11 days of the festival. There are events every day, including some great musical concerts on the festival's outdoor stage.

The festival actually was started back in 1920 when the Ladies Musical Club produced the first event, which at that time was just one day. The event was a hit -- it drew large delegations of business and community leaders from throughout Seattle, Spokane, and North Central Washington. The next year they added the parade.

This was the first Apple Blossom Festival in the entire country, and it's the oldest major festival in Washington state. Today it draws thousands of visitors from around the world.

Apple Blossom has America's seventh largest carnival, Funtastic Shows, with about 25 rides and games for all age groups. If you enjoy golf, Apple Blossom Festival includes one of the best tournaments in the Northwest. And everyone it seems gravitates to Memorial Park where there are more than 20 food booths featuring such tasty items ad funnel cakes, crepes, elephant ears, ethnic cuisine and much more.

The concert stage is close to the food booths and features live music and entertainment throughout the duration of the festival.

The Grand Parade starts at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 6. Bands from throughout the Northwest join with many colorful floats and proud-stepping equestrian units to make this one of Washington's grandest parades. It's so popular, in fact that the crowd generally is over 100,000 spectators.

And don't forget the Arts and Crafts Fair that is held for three days the first weekend in May. The fair attracts over 140 vendors and 100,000 spectators. All items are handcrafted.

For more information on the festival, go to www.appleblossom.org or phone 509-662-3616.
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