"In the past, an area chef tastes and judges the pies," McDonald said.
Kenny Golliher, 17, is a high school senior, and this is the second year he entered his homemade apple pie. He hopes he's got a winner.
Hedgesville High School won second place two years ago by Kimber Rudisill who was a high school senior and McDonald's teacher assistant.
"She made four or five pies prior to the contest and her cooked filling was the best," McDonald said.
Usually the winning pie comes from Musselman High School, she said.
Sara Good, 17, a junior at Hedgesville High School, said she is using her grandmother's crust recipe. "There are no special ingredients, but it's really good," she said.
Kassi Kunsey, 16, also a junior, said she made two practice pies.
"My mom helped me out a lot in making the pies," she said. Kunsey said she was going to cut out her own apple design and spell out "Apple Harvest" from extra dough that will be placed on top of the pie.
Alice Cogle and Kathleen Merceruio volunteered their time to help McDonald monitor the pie making. "It's fun to help the kids," Cogle said.
The one freshman pie maker was Brandon Lawson, 16. He said he wants to be a chef.
"I made a practice pie and learned to cut the apples up a little smaller," he said.
About 80 apple pies from Berkeley and Jefferson County high schools were entered, said Jan Chancey, festival board member and chairperson for the Apple Pie Baking and Dessert contests.
Martinsburg's Centra Bank employees judged the Junior Division pies, and Damian Heath, the chef of Lot 12 Public House in Berkeley Springs, judged the Adult Division and picked the grand prize winner.
The pies were auctioned off after the awards ceremony, said Chancey.
Contest winners announced
Grand Prize: David Barksdale, Musselman High School.
First place: Jessica Morrison, Musselman High School; Second place: Brittany Michael, Musselman High School; Third place: Bradley Barrett, Musselman High School.
First place: Betty Crites of Inwood; Second place: Mary Ruth Miller of Gerrardstown; Third place: Linda Johnston of Harpers Ferry.
First place: Hazel Whittington of Hedgesville; Second place: Ben Byers of Martinsburg; Third place: Sarah Manning of Inwood.