It just isn’t autumn without the hundreds of freshly baked apple pies and steaming-hot fritters dipped in powdered sugar at the New Paltz Reformed Church. The church’s annual apple festival this past Saturday was still a success, despite having to limit the size and scope due to the Covid-19 restrictions.
“We made 108 pies this year,” said Cheryl Alloway, a Reformed Church volunteer for this year’s scaled-down Fall Bakery and Market, which took place on Huguenot Street from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on a stunning fall afternoon. Although they traditionally make upwards of 180 pies, the organizers weren’t sure what to expect in terms of turnout, considering people’s various health concerns. “We had 60 preorders, which was impressive,” she said. Outweighing the quantity of pies or fritters or local apples they sold was just the joy of camaraderie in baking the pies and coming together to celebrate fall outdoors with friends, neighbors and visitors.
“We staggered the pie-making so that we didn’t have as many people working together in the kitchen as we normally would,” the volunteer explained. “But members of our congregation were just so excited to be able to bake for this event and have something to look forward to, and get outside and be social, but safe.”
The youth choir was on hand to sell their renowned fritters, and Alloway said that they were a “tremendous help” with the apple-peeling and carting the pies up from the social hall in the basement to the front entrance of the church. There were also bags of Dressel Farms’ apples and Gary’s Pickles and a variety of hand-knitted items and baked goods set up for sale underneath a canopy of colored leaves.