Apple 'n Pork Festival
Apple 'n Pork Festival
(Always the last full weekend in September)
at the C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County
219 E. Woodlawn, Clinton, Illinois 61727
Click here for photos
The modest fundraising event, which originated on the C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum grounds years ago around a kettle of soup simmered over an open wood fire and stack of sandwiches, has evolved into a two-day, signature event celebrating harvest, heritage, history and hospitality.
The Apple 'n Pork Festival was established by the DeWitt County Museum Association to provide the funds necessary to restore and furnish the palatial home of one of DeWitt County's most prominent citizens, Clifton H. Moore. One of Clinton's earliest residents, Moore was a law partner and personal friend of Abraham Lincoln, a land speculation partner of David Davis, and one of Clinton's leading benefactors. Once one of the finest houses in the city, the Moore house had fallen to disrepair by the 1960's. In 1967, as the once grand structure on the north edge of town approached a century of existence, it was slated for demolition. One of Moore's heirs offered use of the property to the then newly-formed DeWitt County Museum Association on the condition that the association refurbish and maintain the historic Victorian mansion and open the doors to the public.
That first small and humble Apple 'n Pork Festival was a deemed a success. The funds raised were utilized to carry out the monumental task of refurbishing the once grand, old house room-by-room, during the next twenty years.
Now fully restored and operating as a museum, events venue, cultural hub, education center, and historic landmark, Moore's former residence and accompanying acreage and outbuildings are visited by thousands each year. Minerva Moore Bishop, the original first lady of the house, would be pleased to have so many visit her home which, from 1867 until Minerva's death in 1880 (at which time, her brother, Clifton H. Moore purchased the property from his widower brother-in-law) was deemed one of the most welcoming in the city. According to tradition, Minerva enjoyed nothing more than inviting people into her home. That hospitable tradition continues. Approximately 1,000 visitors tour the mansion during festival weekend.
Artisans demonstrating nineteenth century crafts; an antique tractor show; free farm museum tours; blacksmithing, ropemaking, woodcarving, and meal grinding demonstrations; living history interpreters; artists displaying their work; free musical entertainment; tours of the historic Moore mansion; clogdancers; and over 25 old-fashioned food booths featuring a wide variety of delicious, old-fashioned, apple and pork foods can all be enjoyed on the museum grounds.
Among the "apple 'n pork" offerings are smoked ham sandwiches, apple fritters, apple cider doughnuts, fried apples, apple cider floats, pulled pork, apple butter, grilled bratwurst, pork chops, taffy apples, caramel apple sundaes, apple sheet Danish, and ham and beans prepared over an open fire. Home baked gingerbread, funnel cakes, kettle corn, river rat potatoes, homemade candies, corn on the cob, biscuits with gravy, and other old-time favorites will also be served.
Across the museum's little red covered bridge, more than 250 flea market booths offering antiques, crafts, and a variety of other unique items and merchandise can be found. Pony rides and a petting zoo are also located north of the bridge.
Today, the objective of the Apple 'n Pork Festival remains the same – event proceeds help fund routine museum maintenance & operation, educational programs, activities, and special events. Many other local non-profit organizations also benefit greatly from food booth sales made on the museum grounds.
For more information, contact the C.H. Moore Homestead DeWitt County Museum at 217-935-6066, email@example.com or find Apple 'n Pork Festival (look for the official trademarked logo) on Facebook.
We welcome local, non-profit food vendors who serve DeWitt County. Please call to inquire.
The crafter tent is by annual invitation only. To be considered, please send at least three photos (to be reviewed by jury) of your work as well as your name, complete mailing address, and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org .
19th Century Demonstrators & Living History Interpreters:
All are encouraged to contact the museum at 217-935-6066
Please send at least three photos (to be reviewed by jury) of your work as well as your name, complete mailing address, and phone number to email@example.com .
Flea Market Vendors:
We will soon be accepting applications for the 2020 Apple 'n Pork Festival. To apply to be a new vendor, send your name, complete mailing address, phone number, description of what you sell and photographs of your merchandise to firstname.lastname@example.org AFTER January 20, 2020.
The use of the phrase "Apple 'n Pork Festival," "Apple & Pork Festival" or "Apple and Pork Festival" or substantially similar language on any apparel, decorative items, memorabilia, print or digital media, or any other items is restricted to those with a licensing agreement with the museum. Anyone wishing to inquire about such an agreement may contact the museum for the application. All inquiries for the 2020 festival must be received prior to June 1, 2020.
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