September 9, 2012

New Centerville’s 60th Farmers & Threshermens Jubilee



NEW HAMPSHIRE—Apple cider was named the official state drink in 2010 based on the suggestion of students from Jaffrey (pop. 5457). The state’s orchards produce several varieties of apples, particularly McIntosh, for cider.1

I wonder if New Hampshire is experiencing the same problems making cider as the New Centerville Fire Department did the first day of their 60th annual New Centerville Farmers & Threshermens Jubilee.

First, they had to double their prices…because the apples were twice as expensive this year than last year:

Second, their cider press broke down…a major part that cuts the apples on the top broke. It cannot be purchased—it needs to be made. Another part was also damaged:

One of the reasons my husband Monte and I wanted to attend the Jubilee was to indulge in its freshly pressed apple cider. However, all the cider made before the equipment breakdown was sold. We were out of luck.

In the days of yore (boy, does that make us sound old) we used to gather apples and take them to an Amish cider press. Ummm…we do miss that luxury.


Another reason we attended the jubilee was for Monte to participate in their apple pie contest. In the wee hours of the morning Monte arose to make an apple-rhubarb pie topped with meringue. It looked scrumptious, with the tips of its meringue peaks browned to perfection.

Aside from the unrest of safely transporting the pie and the lack of fresh pressed cider Monte and I spent a delightful day at the festival, which features farm machinery and celebrates the apple.


It was a gorgeous early autumn day, a robin’s egg blue hue accented by fluffy white clouds. We wandered over to visit the threshing machines, one of which was separating oats from chaff. Something must have been in the air, because the men were having difficulty keeping the threshing machine running.


…and chaff

Monte explained about the corn blower machine, which makes ensilage.

I shot pictures of wheels:

We wandered to the building where cider is made and ham and bean soup is sold. We sat at a picnic table to eat ours (I had the best deal when Monte separated out his ham and gave it to me—he’s vegetarian). We chatted with a couple from Ebensburg while we ate and she told us about an Ebensburg  restaurant (Costa’s), a quilt shop near Wyotech school in Blairsville (peacebypiece on the computer), and online Scrabble games.

Next we checked out the photographs. Some were very nice. I’d thought about submitting some photos but it was impractical to drive to the festival site two additional times just to drop them off and pick them up.

We looked at the quilts—such nice handiwork. They are so time consuming to make, and since I’ve been writing I haven’t been doing crafts. We wandered through the concession stands and the craft booths.

The parade started at 6:15 p. m. While waiting for it to begin we sat near a man from  Confluence.

“I can speak of Confluence with pride,” he said. “I’m the mayor.” He has been for eight years. He finds the most rewarding part of being mayor is being able to do weddings.

During the parade various participants tossed out candy, so much that Monte said he saw one child with a bagful. The kids were cleaning up in the sweets department. After witnessing one toddler put himself in danger running out to retrieve a piece I mentioned to someone that there were communities which have banned tossing candy out at parades due to the threat of harming an errant child.

Then there was the man standing beside me who wore a shirt saying Redneck Firefighting. I couldn’t resist taking pictures of his back with the passing firetrucks. Of course, it was all in fun. The firemen perform thankless work keeping our communities safe. Monte and I have a great deal of appreciation for them.

After the parade we walked to the hall to watch the Jubilee queen competition and the apple pie auction. On the way the sunset colored the sky with pinks, blues…

Three young women competed to be the Jubilee queen. They had to orate a Jubilee radio ad, and then were asked a surprise question:

  • If you woke up tomorrow and could choose      any quality what would you want it to be?
  • What act of friendship has made a      difference in your life?
  • When you get up in the morning and look      in the mirror what do you see?

The 2011 queen was also asked a question:

  • If you could change who you are, what      would you change and why?

There was a lot of background noise and it was difficult to hear the answers.

While the judges left to calculate the young women’s scores the auctioneer stepped up to auction off the pies that won the apple pie contest. The judges requested that the ladies who won step to the front of the room. Monte was confused…he won, but he certainly is not a lady! The winners had to stand in the front of the room holding their pie as it was auctioned off.

The second place youth pie brought in $200, purchased by her family. Monte’s pie, the third place winner in the adult category, fetched $45. An older gentleman purchased it.

We stayed to hear the announcement of the 2012 Jubilee queen (on left):

Our day done we meandered to our car and headed back to Laurel Mountain Borough.



Fresh Apple Cider and a Drunk Moose

Monte’s Pie Baking Escapades:

Jelly Beans of All Flavors:


1TIDBITS Did  you know, American Profile, 2012—otherwise undated


1 Comment »


    Comment by Joan — September 9, 2012 @ 8:08 am | Reply

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