*Applications for 2016 vendors will go out in February, with a deadline of April 1. It’s important to return the application and fees promptly. We can’t guarantee the same space as the past year, but we will do our best, and will consider your request for a move (space available). Applications for new vendors (those on our interest list) will go out in April with a deadline of June 1. Vendors are chosen by uniqueness of product, whether or not the product fits our guidelines, and space available, so not everyone on the 2017 interest list will receive an application. Please leave your contact info here for our vendor waiting/mailing list. Thank you!*
Frequently Asked Vendor Questions
Here’s everything you need to know, but feel free to ask!
When is the Apple Festival?
The Lincoln County Apple Festival is always on the 3rd Saturday in September covering seven blocks of Main Street and around the Court Square. The hours are 9 – 4.
What are the types of vendors and exhibitors?
- Crafters: All items must be handmade by the seller. All crafters must live and operate in Lincoln County or a county that borders Lincoln. These are Cleveland, Gaston, Mecklenburg, Iredell, Catawba, and Burke Counties. You may share a booth with one other crafter. All vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs.
- Food Vendors: Must be a registered non-profit organization in Lincoln County only. No power or generators, no charcoal. All food vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs, and follow the Health Department’s guidelines for safe food handling, and the Fire Department’s requirements for fire safety .
- Non-Profit/Non-Selling: Must be a non-profit organization in Lincoln County only, providing information and giveaways only. All vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs.
- Non-Profit Selling: Must be a non-profit organization in Lincoln County only. Selling as a fundraiser. You may not sell crafts or foods. All vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs.
- Businesses: Must be a business operating within Lincoln County. Businesses may only offer information and giveaways. All vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs.
- Kids Orchard: Vendors and exhibitors must be from Lincoln County unless by invitation and must provide a simple game or activity that appeals to children under 12. Each child must receive a prize of some kind. The chargeable limit for activities in the Kid’s Orchard is $5.
- Special Events: Special events may be entertaining activities or educational displays such as race cars and fire trucks. Fee is at the discretion of the Board depending on the type of event and whether or not the event advertises a business, a non-profit, or a special attraction invited by the Board.
- Sponsors: Businesses outside of Lincoln County may opt to have a booth at the festival, however they may not sell, only offer information. Contact us at LCAppleFestival1972@gmail.com for sponsorship levels.
- Downtown Merchants: Merchants who choose to reserve booth space on the street in front of their store may register as a vendor. If that area is unavailable, every effort will be made to give that space priority for merchant use. Downtown merchants MUST occupy their space if they have reserved it. All vendors are responsible for providing their own tent, tables, and chairs.
- Entertainment: The Apple Festival operates three stages, and artists perform without compensation. All entertainment chosen, and the performance schedule is at the complete discretion of the Board’s Entertainment chair. For an entertainment application and instructions, click here.
- Farmer’s Market and Ag City: Both are managed by Lincoln County Cooperative Extension and operate independently of the Apple Festival. To participate, contact Lincoln County Cooperative Extension at 704-736-8452.
I'm interested. How do I get an application?
Returning vendors receive applications automatically in February. Applications for new vendors start going out in April. To put your name on our interest list, click here and send your info. If you’re accepted, we will mail an application and other details.
How are vendors chosen?
Acceptance as a vendor is measured by the diversity or uniqueness of the product, food, activity, and whether or not there have been infractions in past years. Festival rules state that organizations that do not adhere to Festival rules face the possibility of not being invited back to the Festival except by special vote of the Apple Festival Board.
If I'm accepted, may I choose my location?
If you’re a returning vendor we will do our best to accommodate every request, but we can never guarantee the same space. Most often, the decision to move a vendor after assignment is for safety reasons and better traffic flow. We try very hard to keep our crafters together in sections F and G on East Main Street.
What is the per-booth cost?
For 2016, craft, food, and business booths are $135; non-profits that are not selling are $50; and Kid’s Orchard booths are $35. Vendors that pay after June 1 are subject to a late registration fee and risk losing booth space.
I was accepted and have paid. When will I learn my booth assignment?
A full vendor packet is mailed around the first or second week of August. The packet contains clear instructions and guidelines, booth assignment, and maps. It also includes the booth sign and entry passes that you must have on the day of the Festival. It’s important to review this packet as soon as you receive it and call with questions as soon as possible. Then put your packet in a safe place. The week of the Festival is too late to call the office to replace a lost packet.
Does the Festival provide the tents and tables?
Vendors are responsible for their own tents, tables, chairs, signage, and garbage receptacle.
May I pay extra and have electricity?
Sorry, but no. Only specific special events have electrical service, and generators aren’t allowed.
What if if rains?
Unfortunately, we will all get wet, because we won’t cancel for rain. Afternoon showers are not uncommon, so plan ahead and cross your fingers for sunny skies.
What if I pay and then I can't come?
Payments are generally non-refundable after August 1, but if you find out you’re not coming, let us know as soon as possible. In some cases, the Board will choose to roll the fee over to the next year.
How many should I plan for?
That’s hard to determine, because it depends on what you’re offering. We estimate that we average 80,000 visitors on a sunny day, but not all will stop at your booth.
When may I start setting up?
Setting up the night before the Festival is not an option, however, all vendors may begin setting up at 5:30 am on the day of the Festival. To enter, you will need a 2016 vehicle pass to get on the grounds. Your vehicle passes come in your vendor packet in August. It’s best to drive in, unpack, go park your vehicle, and return to set up. The deadline for setup is 7:30 am when all vendor vehicles must be off the street. Many of our visitors come early to beat the midday heat, so try to be ready to go by at least 8:30.
Where do vendors park?
At this time, we don’t have a designated vendor parking area, but there’s parking available at Gaston College a couple of blocks away, and you may park outside the Festival zone in any empty parking space not marked for handicap parking. Parking inside the barricades puts you at risk for tickets and towing. Hint: Arrive early.