The ninth annual Waldo County Pie Contest is open to all bakers and serves as the centerpiece of the 2011 Waldo County Pie and Story Festival Sunday, Sept. 18 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Belfast Boathouse at Steamboat Landing, on the waterfront.

Musician and renowned storyteller Jennifer Armstrong will present a family program that includes Susan Reed, who is a folk musician, singer, storyteller, as well as a classical violinist, from the Boston area. Reed’s most recent CD for children, “Lion In The Sky,” just won a Creative Child Magazine CD of the Year Award.

Also in the lineup will be Belfast Poet Laureate Jacob Fricke, some old timey music by the Hatfield Family and, of course, a few of the usual surprises during this ninth annual afternoon of music, stories, pie and plenty of family fun for all.

The festival will start with free music and stories for the whole family; halfway through, there will be slices of pie available for a dollar each. Each slice comes with a ballot to vote, or not. Excellent coffee, tea and spring water also will be available, donated by community sponsor the Belfast Coop.

Anyone may enter a pie for prizes. All types of pies are welcome, sweet or savory, as long as they are homemade. Because of allergy concerns, a complete list of ingredients should accompany all pies. It would not hurt anyone’s feelings if more than one pie, along with pie serving utensils, is brought to the table.

General pie voting will include four categories — Best Pie Ever, Most Beautiful Pie, Most Unusual Pie and Yummy Mess. Special prizes and awards also will be given for best local ingredient pie — grown, gathered or caught. Winners in the four major categories will be heaped high with praises and handed a few pretty good prizes.

This year, after the opening song, the festival will start with a lively and competitive whole-pie auction with that fast-talking auctioneer, Rosie Gerry. Piemakers should bring pies at noon on the day of the event. For more information on how to enter pies or to help with the event, look for Waldo County Pie & Story Festival on Facebook; or call Susan Guthrie at 338-6140 or Armstrong at 338-6616.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to dernest@villagesoup.com.