LORDSTOWN - Saturday was a good place for bees to be buzzing in the middle school parking lot.
They were hovering all around the members of the Lions Club, who were smashing, dashing, pressing and pounding apples to be made into cider at the 37th annual Lords-town Apple Cider Festival.
There was no middleman either, as the cider was instantly transferred to a nearby booth and sold. Rick Albrecht of the Lions Club said when the festival is over today, they probably will have gone through about 8,000 pounds of apples.
Tribune Chronicle / Joe Gorman
Rick Albrecht of the Lordstown Lions Club stands Saturday next to a trailer with the remains of apples used for cider at the Lordstown Apple Cider Festival, which continues today.
Bryce Grimm liked the results. He was drinking from his jug of cider before he even got back to his car. All told, he brought four gallons and planned on freezing three of them.
''It's very good, as always,'' Grimm said.
Albrecht said the press the club uses to make the cider is donated, and the preparations for the event start about a month before it actually begins.
9 a.m. to 1 p.m. - pancake brunch sponsored by the Lordstown Soccer League, high school
10 a.m. - 5K race
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. - craft, quilt, flower show and other exhibits
2 to 7 p.m. - bingo
3 p.m. - parade with grand marshal John Phillips
4 to 7 p.m. - Minute to Win II
This year, the Lions purchased apples from Peace Valley orchards in Rogers and Dillon Farms in Greenford. Albrecht said it was hard finding good apples this year because of a frost that affected the apple crop early in the growing season.
When it comes to making the popular beverage, the club often goes right to the source: the orchards.
He said the Lions do not charge a lot for their cider for one simple reason: ''We try to keep it reasonable or else you're not going to sell it.''
Different types of apples are often thrown into the press and mixed together to make the cider, Albrecht said. He said it takes six people to run the press, plus several others to help get the baskets of apples ready to be put into the press.
He said the Lions will put on the festival as long as they can.
''We hope to keep doing it because there are a lot of people who like the fresh cider,'' Albrecht said.
Cammy Ricketts of McDonald said she comes every year for the cider.
''That's why we come out,'' she said. ''We buy a few gallons and we freeze it.''
In addition to all things apple, the annual fest also included a Little Prince and Princess contest, fireworks and a car show.
Lester Stevens had a car in the show and said he likes the festival.
''It's (cider) mighty good to have and you can see all the people,'' he said.
The ground-up apples that are not used will be used for fertilizer, Albrecht said. He said someone has already offered to take them.