ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — The Golden Apple Foundation began its annual effort to recognize outstanding teachers in the Rockford area on Thursday.

Rockford University’s baseball players continued their yearly tradition of loading cars with more than 5,000 apples, donated from Schnucks grocery stores.

Volunteers delivered the fruit to 150 schools in Boone and Winnebago Counties.

Golden Apple representatives said the effort is meant to give every teacher an apple in exchange for all they do for schoolchildren.

Nominations for the best 6th through 12th grade teachers in Boone and Winnebago Counties are open, and are due by October 12th.