Pie Pilgrimages To Make Before You Die

It’s amazing what you can discover while you are putting off doing more important things. Toodling around online for anything related to pie, I came across a 1997 column in the Orlando Sentinel by a guy identified only as “Commander Coconut.” He must have had some kind of clout in the pie world, since the American Pie Council was asking him to help decide what to put on the organization’s official bumper sticker (this is high-stakes work, y’all). They also wanted him to help judge the group’s annual pie festival.

Reading this, I just about jumped out of my skin. So many yummy tidbits I want to dig into. Like this one: There’s an American Pie Council? What did they choose as their bumper sticker slogan? And how can I get one? And this: They have an annual pie contest? When is the next one? And how quickly can I buy a plane ticket?

Thanks to the wonders of Google, we have the answers instantaneously. The American Pie Council, as it turns out, is based in Lake Forest, Illinois. It bills itself as “the only organization committed to preserving America’s pie heritage and promoting American’s love affair with pies.” (America’s love affair! I’m not alone!) The group offers amateur, professional and commercial memberships.

Every year, the APC hosts the National Pie Championships, where piemakers compete in their respective categories (amateur, professional and commercial). They also sponsor the Great American Pie Festival. Mark your calendar for April 27-29 in Orlando, Fla., and nearby Celebration, Fla., where the 2012 events will be taking place.

Now for the most adorable, irresistible part: They put out a quarterly newsletter called Pie Times. And possibly more adorable? They have created National Pie Day. The 2012 date is January 23rd. And they conclude their little membership pitch with the utterly predictable–but still adorable–line: “Joining is as easy as pie.” [Cue big groans. But still, totally adorable.]

I could not, of course, resist the lure of this. So I can now say that as of 30 seconds ago, CurvyMama is a proud member of the American Pie Council!

So what if Crisco has its name plastered across many of the Council’s doings? I owe my allegiance to the Greater Cause of Pie. I will carry my membership card proudly.

Now I just wish I knew what slogan they chose for their bumper sticker. I looked around on their website, but they offer only tote bags.  The Orlando Sentinel column doesn’t provide a clear answer to my bumper-sticker question either, mentioning only these four candidates:

I Brake for Pie

Pie: It’s Not a Dessert; It’s a Lifestyle

Honk If You Bake Pie

In Crust We Trust

I suspect the first one won, because it was the only one of the four that I could find online.

I tried to call the good people at the American Pie Council, to see if maybe a free bumper sticker comes with my membership. But their website doesn’t list a phone number. So I sent my inquiry in through their little online form. I patiently await their word.