Festival brings small community together as one

WLFI/File Photo
WLFI/File Photo

BROOKSTON, Ind. (WLFI) — Despite a few early morning rain showers, the Brookston Apple Popcorn Festival went off without a hitch.

Thousands of people packed the small town’s streets on Saturday. The festival included music, food and more than 200 craft vendors to choose from.

Melissa Summers has served on the festival committee for nearly a decade. She said the annual event draws in people from hundreds of miles away.

“This is a great way to highlight our town,” Summers said. “It brings the community together.”

Just three months ago, the streets lined with people for the festival were covered with trees and power lines. This came after severe weather passed through, leaving the town of 1,500 under a state of emergency.

Nina Kent lives on a farm a mile east of town.

“We lost two pole barns and about maybe five-sixths of our trees that we had out there,” Kent said.

Becky Lehe has lived in Brookston her entire life. Like Kent, she was also faced with some of the damage the storm left behind.

“We lost one complete tool shed that housed multiple pieces of large equipment, and that was gone, that was ruined in the storm, and then mostly roof damage, a lot of rooftops, a lot of siding,” Lehe said.

She said Saturday’s festival serves as a reminder of a small community that rallies behind one another.

“It just shows that … your spirit can’t be broken, you know? You just can’t let, can’t let it break your spirit. So that’s what we’re all about here [in] Brookston,” Lehe said.

More than 10,000 people are estimated to attend this year’s event.

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