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Easy as Applesauce : Bradford, Vt., Church Hosts Second Social

  • Apples are washed before they are peeled at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Apples are washed before they are peeled at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Apples are sliced at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Apples are sliced at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Jars of applesauce are ready for canning at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Jars of applesauce are ready for canning at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Kendra Colburn, left, Bridget Peters, and Holly Young, bottle applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Kendra Colburn, left, Bridget Peters, and Holly Young, bottle applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Patricia Palmer stirs up a bucket of chopped apples for applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Patricia Palmer stirs up a bucket of chopped apples for applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Kendra Colburn, left, and Marcia Tomlinson, take home bottles of fresh applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Kendra Colburn, left, and Marcia Tomlinson, take home bottles of fresh applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Melissa Peters, of Hanover, separates skins from chopped, cooked apples to make applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

    Melissa Peters, of Hanover, separates skins from chopped, cooked apples to make applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Apples are washed before they are peeled at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Apples are sliced at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Jars of applesauce are ready for canning at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on Oct. 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Kendra Colburn, left, Bridget Peters, and Holly Young, bottle applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Patricia Palmer stirs up a bucket of chopped apples for applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Kendra Colburn, left, and Marcia Tomlinson, take home bottles of fresh applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)
  • Melissa Peters, of Hanover, separates skins from chopped, cooked apples to make applesauce at the Second Annual Applesauce Social at the Bradford Congregational Church in Bradford, Vt. on October 6, 2013. (Valley News - Elijah Nouvelage)

A light drizzle fell from a gloomy sky outside Bradford (Vt.) Congregational Church last Sunday, quite at odds with the sunny dispositions of the eight people in the church’s basement.

The small group had assembled there for the second annual Applesauce Social, a free community event organized by Bradford Community Canning and the church itself, which supplies all the necessary equipment, bottles and resources. Local farms and supermarkets donated the mostly organic apples, which included a number of heirloom varieties.

Organizer Bridget Peters began the applesauce social last year.

“It was sort of personal. I like to make applesauce and I like to do it with other people. People who have done it before would enjoy it, and I wanted to introduce the fun of it to those who hadn’t, and show them how easy it is,” she said.

Another reason, said Peters, was to open the church’s doors to community members. “That space is such a nice resource that it’s nice to use it for community outreach and not just church things.”

After three hours of washing, chopping, laughing, stewing and sieving, the group produced about 65 bottles of hot, fresh, pinkish-red applesauce.

Participants left with knowing how to make applesauce — and with as many bottles as they could carry. The remaining sauce was given away to friends and food shelves. Peters said she freezes some bottles to bring to the church’s monthly community dinner.

Lucia Button, a church member who participated in the event, said she likes the fact that many church events are free, such as movie showings, dinners, and community events.

“A lot of people are confused that they don’t have to bring anything. They keep asking ‘What can I bring?’ and I say ‘Nothing, just yourself and your smile,’ ” she said.