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Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival parade to detour Martinsburg traffic

North Queen Street is recommended route to downtown for those interested in festival's arts and craft show

October 18, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The 33rd Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival parade on Saturday is expected to effectively detour traffic in downtown Martinsburg for more than three hours, according to organizers and police.

Vehicle traffic will be prohibited from traveling on the parade route and the course for Apple Trample 5K race beginning about 11:30 a.m. Saturday, police said.

The parade, which starts in the 1300 block of West King Street, is slated to start at 1 p.m. With 196 parade units registered, Apple Harvest Festival board member Kevin McBee said this week he expects the procession could last three to four hours from start to finish.

The first traffic detour for the parade actually will go into effect about 8:30 a.m. when West King Street between Louisiana and Tennessee avenues is closed to allow the parade units to begin lining up, Martinsburg Police Department Capt. Tim Catlett said Thursday.

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Beginning at 8 a.m., parking will be prohibited along the parade route, the 100 blocks of East and West Martin street, 100 blocks of East and West Burke Street and the 100 and 500-1300 blocks of West King Street and the 100 block of East King Street, police said.

From the 1300 block of West King Street, the parade will proceed east to Raleigh Street and then north before turning east on Martin Street to reach Queen Street. The parade route then turns south onto Queen Street, proceeding through town square and several more city blocks to Bulldog Boulevard at Martinsburg High School.

The parking and traffic restrictions for the parade route will remain in effect until after the city is able to sweep the streets after the procession ends, Catlett said.

Any vehicle that remains parked along the parade route and certain adjoining city blocks will be towed, the police department has announced.

While the traffic restrictions are in place for the parade, North Queen Street is the recommended route to downtown Martinsburg for those interested in going to the festival’s arts and craft show at the historic Baltimore & Ohio Railroad roundhouse and shops.

The Caperton Train Station at 229 E. Martin St., will serve as the main entrance to the arts and craft show.

From North Queen Street, free public parking at the train station will be accessible via Race Street and nearby public parking lots off East Martin and East Burke streets also will remain open during the parade, according to city officials.

On-street parking throughout downtown also will be free, but paid “premium” parking will be offered at the former Dodge dealership off Queen and Race streets, according to Apple Harvest board member Randy Lewis.

In addition to the arts and crafts show, other activities that previously were held at the Berkeley County Youth Fairgrounds, including apple eating, peeling and baby apple seed contests, also will be held at the roundhouse complex for the first time.

Information about other Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival events, which started Thursday and continue through Sunday, are on the festival’s website at www.msahf.com.

Individuals interested in participating in the 5K Apple Trample can still register online at http://appletrample.com or up until 11:30 a.m. Saturday, 30 minutes before the race is set to start at the Dorothy A. McCormack Center on the City Hospital campus in Martinsburg.

The route for the Apple Trample follows Dry Run Road to Tennessee Avenue and West King Street and then onto the parade route and also ends at the high school.

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