LUXEMBURG - There might be nothing more American than homemade apple pie. However, those at the Kewaunee County Fair take the slice of Americana a little more seriously.
In fact, winning the pie contest brings some royal treatment.
Slices of apple pie represent more than just homemade goodness; they also represent a slice of pride in Luxemburg.
"One of these years, I'm going to make it," said BJ Simonar of Luxemburg. "It gives you a whole year of bragging rights, and the guys that have won, are very good at the bragging."
Roughly 10 years ago, BJ Simonar entered the pie contest, but was disappointed to see only a few entries.
"They were concerned that the pies weren't being brought in in the open class and they might close this part of the fair down, so jokingly one of them said to me, 'why don't you bake a pie?' and I said okay," Simonar said.
Simonar eventually found some new recruits. Most are actually businessmen from around the county.
"Good flavor, the apples are done, this is a good pie," said Judge Donna Zastrow of Algoma during the pie judging.
Each year, state-certified judges sample each entry, and after a few sour apples, the judges make their pick.
"I bake one pie a year, and this is it," said 2013 Apple Pie King Bruce Seidl. "This was a little unexpected because I didn't think it was really that good."
In addition to the culinary bragging rights, the grand champion also becomes Kewaunee County royalty, with a special spot in Sunday's parade.
"You have a custom-made aluminum pie pan crown that you wear in the parade and they have a car for you to ride in," explained Fair Exhibit Coordinator Darlene Boeder.
"It's fun, a lot of smack talk with the business owners and business people of Luxemburg and it's growing," Seidl said.
And those who've kept the competition going have high hopes for the future.
"This is our 96th year. Our goal is 100 pies for our 100th year in four years," explained Simonar.
This year's champion works at Luxemburg Implement Company. You can find his pie as well as the other entries in a display case in the main building on the east side of the fair grounds.
The fair goes all weekend.
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