Erwin mayor outlines impact of Unicoi County Apple Festival cancellation

Local Coronavirus Coverage

ERWIN, Tenn. (WJHL) – The 2020 Unicoi County Apple Festival is the latest event to be cancelled in our area due to the pandemic.

The Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce said on Thursday that the 43rd annual festival scheduled to take place on October 2-3 would not happen.

Erwin Mayor Doris Hensley says the annual festival brings a slight increase to sales tax but she expects vendors and non-profits like the library and animal shelter to take a major hit.

“The first reaction that we had was ‘Why not? What are we going to do now?’ because this was our biggest event that we have to showcase Erwin and Unicoi County so, it’s heartbreaking that we’re not going to be able to have it,” Hensley said. “I’m proud of the chamber of commerce that they chose to put the people’s safety over their needs right now.”

Organizers say they spent months looking at possible scenarios and no safe options seemed to present themselves.

They also are already planning for the festival’s return in 2021.

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