Gravenstein Days comes to the Valley this weekend

The menu for Gravenstein Days, Saturday and Sunday, brings fresh apples, barbecue, pie and ice cream, cider slushies, award-winning wines, and more.

The festival happens at farms and businesses around the Fruit Loop in the Hood River Valley. Gravenstein apples, considered by many to be the best variety for pies, applesauce and desserts, are also a tart and tasty eating apple. Other activities add to the weekend cornucopia. They include:

Dee Fire Department hosts a country barbecue from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days, at the fire station at 52235 Lost Lake Road. Volunteers will serve up beef sandwiches and hot dogs, with side dishes, and apple crisp.

Phoenix Pharms Trout Farm, 4349 Baldwin Rd., hosts its annual fishing derby from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. Fishing poles are provided, no license is needed, and participants get a free snow cone.

At Rasmussen Farms, 3020 Thomsen Rd., the weekend brings live music and juggling jesters from 1 to 3 p.m. each day. Visitors can also try "squash bowling," zucchini carving, and a farm-wide treasure hunt. The corn maze, complete with scenes from The Tale of Peter Rabbit, opens for its autumn run.

Gravensteins will be available for U-pick at Kiyokawa Family Orchard, 8129 Clear Creek Rd., Parkdale. Ready-picked apples will be for sale at Draper's Farm, 6200 Highway 35 in Mt. Hood. Draper's offers free pony rides for children.

For more information on Gravenstein Days, phone 1-800-366-3530.

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