It’s October in Julian, and that means everyone’s talking about apples.
Each fall, when the fruit is in season, families from all over San Diego, Los Angeles and even Arizona head to the small mountain town to celebrate everything from pies and jams to cider and cookies.
And while there are events going through September and October, the biggest party — Julian Apple Days — happens this weekend. Here’s what’s in store for those heading out.
Julian’s weekend-long Apple Days festival will have all things apples, an antique tractor display, children’s games, gold-panning demonstrations, music, dancing, food, and a beer and wine garden. And yes, there will be plenty of apple pie. Those who go on Sunday will see the coronation of Mr. and Mrs. Apple Days at 1 p.m.
Tip: Thousands of people attend this event and parking gets tight, so head out early. Another incentive? The first 250 people through the door (each day) will get a free pie server.
What’s an apple festival without picking your own fresh apples? Though there are a handful of pick-your-own orchards throughout Julian, the biggest one — Raven Hill Orchard — is next door to the festival grounds.
And for those looking for fresh apples and pears without having to do the work, there will be produce stands set up throughout town.
Those who want to experience the historical side of Julian should head to the Julian Mining Co., where visitors can mine for gems and gold, go on a tractor-drawn hayride and pick pumpkins (julianminingcompany.com). In addition, the Julian Historical Society building, a classic one-room schoolhouse that served students from 1988 to 1954, will be open weekends throughout October (julianca.com).
And a truly offbeat adventure can be found at WikiupBed and Breakfast, where families can head out on llama treks through the woods and apple orchards. (wikiupbnb.com)
The first Apple Days was celebrated in 1909 after a Julian apple received a Wilder medal, the highest award given by the American Pomological Society, the oldest fruit organization in the country. The party was a one-day event, but it was revived in 1949 as an annual festival that, at times, attracted 20,000 people.
Julian Apple Days Festival
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
Where: Menghini Winery, 1150 Julian Orchards Drive, Julian
Admission: $5 adults; free children 12 and younger
Phone: (760) 803-4377
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