Russell Burk revved up his tractor, much to the delight of children riding in the trailer bed.
"With all the problems in the world, it helps to take a day on the farm," Burk said. "It's a good day."
Volunteers projected attendance of several hundred by the afternoon. The festival, sponsored by both Chapel Hills and the Perry Hall Improvement Association, continues Sunday, between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
More than 40 craft vendors and food vendors participated. Contests, hayrides, children's activities and a live band were included. Admission was free.
The PHIA rebranded Chapel Hills' annual Fall Festival Days kick-off to include crafters, contests and apple-themed activities. Audrey Burn, a PHIA volunteer, drew the idea from the Apple Festival held in her hometown of New Cumberland, PA.
Burn and volunteer Chris Defeo led the PHIA's portion of the event planning.
"We just wanted to bring people together, and have a community-based event," Burn said. "I think it turned out great."
County Councilman David Marks agreed: "It's a spectacular turnout. People like this place because it evokes a small town feel."
For Justin Fitch, the event was all about spending quality time with his daughters—which included a barbecue lunch and a tractor ride.
"It's a lot of fun, with a lot of options to keep us busy," Fitch said.
As the first day of the festival wrapped up, PHIA president Dennis M. Robinson, Jr. released the following statement:
"The first day of the Perry Hall Apple Festival was great! Who needs technology and gadgets when you can spend a good, old-fashioned, day on a farm with family, friends and neighbors? Events like this reinforce my belief that, despite changes over the years, Perry Hall can maintain a small-town feel and strong sense of community. Pride in Perry Hall was palpable today!"
Are you planning on attending? What are your favorite fall family activities? Tell us in the comments.