Ruthie Churak plants an apple tree. A gift from the band CAKE in 2013.
Ruthie Churak plants an apple tree. A gift from the band CAKE in 2013.

It was a September evening in 2013 when Ruthie and Tom Churak of Atlantic Highlands attended The CAKE Entertainment Experience, a concert at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville in support of the band’s Showroom of Compassion album. The first album released under the band’s own label, Upbeat Records.

One reviewer at the time wrote, “The band gave away a Red Delicious apple tree at the end of intermission. The recipient made promises that she would care for the tree forever and send pictures every few years.”

True to their word, Ruth and Tom Churak planted the tree in their yard in Atlantic Highlands and have faithfully nurtured its growth.

Tom Churak said, “They give a tree away at each of their shows to the person who can guess what tree it is. Ruth got it right and won the tree. This year was a bumper crop over 100 apples. Made about a dozen pies and still have about a dozen apples left.”

Churak family apple tree is producing abundant fruit for pies and applesauce.
Churak family apple tree is producing abundant fruit for pies and applesauce.

The band CAKE recently posted an update on their instagram page about the tree.


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“CAKE tree winners Tom and Ruthie in Atlantic Highlands, NJ kindly sent us an update photo of their apple tree! They report their tree produced a bumper crop this year keeping them busy making pies and apple sauce for family and friends. “

Congratulations to Ruthie and Tom Churak. We are reliably told that the pies were delicious.


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Avatar of Allan Dean

Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...