30 September 2014
New attractions are coming to Old Farm Day this Saturday (Oct. 4), lending a sparkle to Fluvanna’s most beloved county tradition of the year.
Receiving top billing is the opening of the Pleasant Grove House, the newly restored and expanded historic home at Pleasant Grove. Built in 1854, the home originally belonged to the Haden family of Fluvanna County. Though the ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the house’s restoration won’t come until Nov. 6, the county is opening the home for self-guided tours during Old Farm Day, and invites the public to stop in and take a look at the nationally registered historic home.
Those strolling up and down the gravel path may notice the absence of what’s become a familiar sight: Terry Lintecum of Fruit Hill Orchard stirring a smoking cast-iron pot full of apple butter. Instead, the county’s Future Farmers of America (FFA) students are making the apple butter to raise money for their program.
Russell Jennings, agriculture and horticulture teacher at the high school, set his students to work at the beginning of this week peeling 20 bushels of apples donated by Fruit Hill Orchard. On Saturday, Jennings plans to arrive at 4:30 a.m. to start 15 gallons of apple cider – pressed from the discarded peels and cores – boiling in his 50-gallon copper pot. “It takes 12 to 14 hours to make apple butter from apples,” he explained. Throughout the day at least 20 of his students will come and help out, slowly adding the apples, the 35 pounds of sugar, and the liquid cinnamon. Jennings plans to make some no-sugar-added apple butter, as well, for Fluvannians watching their waistlines.
Proceeds from apple butter sales allow the FFA to take trips, like the students’ upcoming visit to the state fair; purchase supplies for the program; and provide for events throughout the year.
Not only did Fruit Hill Orchard donate the apples for the FFA apple butter, but they gave up any revenue they would have received selling their own apple butter at Old Farm Day. But they were glad to do it, said Barbara Lintecum. “My husband and I both really want to support the FFA,” she said. “We’re so glad they’re back in