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Bite into fun at the Big Red Apple Festival
Chenocetah fire tower open to tourists during annual event in Cornelia
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Big Red Apple Festival

When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 10

Where: Downtown Cornelia

Cost: Free

More info: 706-778-8585

For one day, Cornelia residents and visitors may cross the threshold of the Chenocetah fire tower and see the expansive view from the mountain that bears its name.

The view, along with hayrides to the historical registry site, is the highlight of the Big Red Apple Festival in Cornelia.

“It’s open this one day a year, so people can actually go in it,” city manager Donald Anderson said.

Built in 1936, the tower is the center of a square stone platform enclosed by a low granite parapet. It overlooks the area from an elevation of 1,830 feet and includes a wooden observation room reached by a metal spiral staircase.

The 54-foot stone tower is closed all year except the day of the festival, which will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 10 in downtown Cornelia.

Named for the statue of the red apple that stands in downtown Cornelia, the 28-year festival will feature an apple market as well as many other events.

“We have a large assortment of craft vendors that sell handmade crafts,” city manager Donald Anderson said. “We’ll have live music all day.”

The bands scheduled for the day are Tallulah River Bluegrass Band, 14 Roots and Luke Latimer. The musical genres of the acts range from bluegrass to Southern rock because these genres best fit the theme of the festival.

While nothing new has been added to lineup for this year, the old saying “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” applies here.

“We’ve been doing the same thing for 28 years,” Anderson said. “ It just works.”

The festival will include a car show, an assortment of food vendors and a kid zone featuring face painting, pony rides and inflatable bouncy houses.

The festival is expected to draw out its usual couple of thousand people.

Despite recent inclement weather, rain will not cause organizer to cancel the Saturday festivities. It will take happen rain or shine.

“It’s just a good, wholesome, family festival,” Anderson said.

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