Apple Harvest fest-goers caught in web of interest

October 19, 2008|By ERIN JULIUS

MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - Star Wars character Chewbacca, Spider-Man and a U.S. congresswoman were among those who appeared Saturday afternoon in the 29th Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival's Grand Feature Parade.

"I saw Spider-Man!" 3-year-old Wyatt Besaw said when asked about his favorite part of the parade. He also liked the antique cars that led the parade, and Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Wyatt said before pausing the interview to retrieve a strawberry candy that had been thrown from someone aboard a float.

Spider-Man, who marched along with Batman, Superman and various other superheroes, was popular with Saturday's crowd, stopping further along the parade route to pose for pictures with some of his fans.

Wyatt's friend, Mollie Rebuck, liked the trumpets, she said through her mother's interpretation.

Mollie wore a blue sweater with a large apple on the front for the occasion, and danced as marching bands passed. This was her third Apple Harvest parade. Mollie went to her first when she was only 7 months old, said her mother, Cammy Rebuck.


Several area bands, including those from Musselman High School in Inwood, W.Va., and Clear Spring High School, marched and played Saturday.

Angelina Gutierrez, who is almost 3, also likes the bands and music, her mother said.

"She likes to dance," Leticia Gutierrez said.

The two go to the parade every year.

"It's a family thing," Gutierrez said. On Saturday, they watched the parade with Gutierrez's grandmother.

Drill teams and cheerleaders also were featured prominently in the parade, with several groups from Hagerstown and the Eastern Panhandle tumbling and dancing their way down King Street.

Some drill team members were so small they were carted along in wagons behind their older teammates.

Along the parade route, families sat in folding chairs and along curbs. Three people perched on a roof were wrapped in blankets.

With an election only weeks ago, candidates for local, state and federal office perched in cars waving to the crowd. One truck bearing a sign urging spectators to "Vote Democrat" pulled a tractor full of enthusiastic Democrats waving signs for their candidates.

Several floats later, U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., waved from her own float filled with volunteers.

Victoria Elbin and her 2-year-old granddaughter, Gabrielle Roberts, set up a chair near Roberts' house toward the start of the parade, at the intersection of Illinois Avenue and King Street. Gabrielle is a Little Miss Apple Seed contestant, and Saturday was her first Apple Harvest parade.

The "horsies" were Gabrielle's favorite part of the parade. A horse-drawn wagon and several solo riders brought up the rear of the parade, which lasted about two hours.

If you go

What: 29th Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival

When: Today, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Where: Berkeley County Youth Fairgrounds, Golf Course Road, Martinsburg, W.Va.

For information and a schedule of events, go to

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