Pie, Oh Pie… It’s the APC Great American Pie Festival!

Love pie? Well, there are two new events coming up in Florida and we’d like to share some information with you. If you are a pie lover, these two are a “must see”!

The Great American Pie Festival

The Prestigious Baking Competition and Family Fun, the APC Great American Pie Festival, Sponsored by Crisco®, is back!

When and Where?

On April 9 and 10, 2011, pie lovers, tasters and bakers will gather in Celebration, Florida, for two very sweet days! Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, April 9; noon to 5 p.m., Sunday, April 10. The festival will be held at Lakeside Park at 631 Sycamore St. in downtown Celebration, Florida 34747. Admission to the festival is free.

9 Years of Celebration!

Chocolate Raisin Walnut Pie. photo courtesy of the American Pie Council
Now in its 9th year, this pie extravaganza dishes up luscious layers of fun for the young and the young at heart. Whether looking to enjoy some of the most delectable desserts in America or simply partake in one of the many entertainment and baking demonstrations staged along Main Street in one of America’s most charming small towns, attendees are sure to enjoy pure pie perfection.

From top crust to two crust, juicy to sweet, chocolate to custard all matter of flavors and fillings will flow forth for two full days in April to the delight of an anticipated 28,000 pie lovers from around the world.

Festival Events

All festival events will be held both days. Whether bonafide pie lovers or casual nibblers looking for an afternoon of fun, Celebration residents and visitors are invited to stroll through the free-admission festival and enjoy two days of family fun, reminiscent of days gone by. Attendees may opt to dig in and compete or simply sit back and enjoy the show. The events include:

  • The Crisco® Kids Creation Station will give aspiring young bakers an opportunity to create their own pies or enjoy some fun with pie decorating, pie-scaping, Piecasso tin art at the Piecasso stage and many more activities!
  • The Pietopia Demonstration Stage sponsored by Village Inn and Bakers Square Restaurants will feature entertainment and baking demonstrations with chefs from across the country.
  • Of course, the Great American Pie Festival would not be complete without a pie eating contest, sponsored by Private Selection.

The Never Ending Pie Buffet

As the festival favorite for the past nine years, the Never Ending Pie Buffet will once again feature an all you can eat smorgasbord of 83,000 award-winning pie slices – up from 70,000 in 2009 — ice cream, toppings and beverages from local, regional and national commercial bakeries, restaurants and markets, including Bakers Square Restaurants and Pies, Bonert’s Slice of Pie, California Raisin Marketing Board, J. Horner’s Desserts, Kroger’s Private Selection, Publix Super Markets, Inc., Rocky Mountain Pies, Smucker’s Toppings, The Folger Coffee Company, Village Inn, Wick’s Pies and Winn-Dixie. This is the only paid event at the festival.  Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for seniors over 65 and children under 5 to enjoy all they care of eat and drink.

The APC/Crisco National Pie Championships

Lemon Swirl Cream Cheese Pie
Lemon Swirl Cream Cheese Pie. photo courtesy of APC

When and Where?

The 17th Annual American Pie Council® (APC)/ Crisco® 2011 National Pie Championships® returns to Orlando April 8-10, 2011 expecting a record number of entries across all categories, to top last year’s record entries: 417 commercial, 170 professional, 321 amateur and seven junior — totaling an astounding 907 pies!

New Categories

New this year are three categories created to reflect the sign of the times.

  • A “Gluten-free” category requiring a pie that is gluten-free in all aspects including crust, filling and toppings:;
  • Crisco Innovation” category sponsored by Crisco in honor of the brand’s 100th Anniversary this year.  The “Innovation” pie requires a blend of classic and contemporary innovative pie making technique and pie flavor selections.
  • Finally, a “Royal Wedding” pie suitable for a soon-to-be-married Prince William and Kate Middleton rounds out the third new category.   The pie’s the limit with all three of the new categories as well as familiar favorites.

It will take a record number of judges — 200 prequalified volunteer pie aficionados — to eat through almost 1,000 pieces to find the crème de la crème of North American pie bakers. It comes as no surprise that the largest number of entries for a single flavor goes to America’s collective favorite — apple pie — with 39 entries in the amateur category.

Entry forms are available online for junior, amateur, professional and commercial divisions.  Entry costs are free for juniors and $15 for amateurs.  APC members receive discounts on entries.

Hotel Discounts

The host hotel Caribe Royale is offering a special $129 per night room rate for those attending or participating in the Great American Pie Festival or National Pie Championships.  To book this special rate, you must tell the hotel you are with the event.  Call 800-823-8300 to book a room.

More Info

For more information, visit the Front Porch Celebration Community or the American Pie Council®, the only organization committed to maintaining America’s pie heritage, passing on the tradition of pie-making and promoting America’s love affair with pie. The APC offers personal, professional and commercial memberships.

Crisco® is a registered trademark of The J. M. Smucker Company.