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Idler’s names top pie makers 

Apple pie contest winners earn kitchen appliances for their efforts

Idler's, Apple Pie Contest, Paso Robles

Pictured left to right are: Idler’s President Don Idler, second place Apple Pie Contest winner Maryann Dinsfriend, first place winner Connie Mooney, third place winner Cathy Vierra, and James Stoddard, a KitchenAid representative.

Connie Mooney of Arroyo Grande took home the first place prize on May 2 for her winning entry in the 30th Annual Mom & Apple Pie Finals Contest, held at the SLO Home Show and sponsored by Idler’s. Paso Robles resident Maryann Dinsfriend earned second place honors while Cathy Vierra of Atascadero was awarded third place.

The 2014 contest started with the first preliminary round at Idler’s in San Luis Obispo on April 12, followed by the second round at the Paso Robles location on April 26. The top six winners from each round advanced on to the final contest. Mooney received a new KitchenAid stainless steel range for her top-award-winning pie. Dinsfriend earned a KitchenAid stand mixer and Vierra earned a KitchenAid microwave oven. Fourth through twelfth place winners received a KitchenAid hand mixer.

The annual event began as a way for the Idler family to celebrate and connect with the community. In 1984, Idler’s was coming up on 30 successful years of serving the Central Coast and had recently opened a new store in Atascadero. It was strong and growing, and the Idler family wanted to celebrate. The celebration had to acknowledge the company’s foundational values — Central Coast families, the home, bringing people together and “the best things in life.”

“The inaugural competition received only six entries,” said Don Idler, President of Idler’s. “Today we receive dozens of entries and the interest continues to grow. It’s heartwarming to see such a simple, old-fashioned tradition remain popular in SLO County.”

In 2014, as Idler’s celebrates its 60th anniversary as a company and the 30th anniversary of the Mom & Apple Pie Contest, the event has become a tradition for many, such as Marie Atkins, who, after participating in the competition for 19 years, took home the grand prize last year. This year’s event at the SLO Home Show marked the debut of Idler’s new name and look, Idler’s Home.

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About the author: Reporter Meagan Friberg

Meagan Friberg is a reporter for the Paso Robles Daily News and A-Town Daily News.