Due to the effects of Tropical Storm Joaquin, St. John the Apostle rescheduled their annual Oktoberfest for Friday, October 16 and Saturday, October 17. This year, the event will reach a milestone as they celebrate their 25th Annual German Oktoberfest. The event will open on Friday, October 16 at 6 pm and continue on Saturday, October 17 at 10am at St. John’s Church, located on the corner of Seabury Avenue and School Place in Milford. The festivities will kick off on Friday evening with live music from local favorites The Funsters and celebrate European cultures through live entertainment, food and fun.
The original Oktoberfest in Germany started in 1810 to celebrate a royal weeding in Munich, Germany and has continued as an annual tradition around the world. The Oktoberfest celebrations in Milford began in 1990 by a German man named Karl Thomas and wife Renate as a way to raise money for St. Johns Church. Revenue made from the first year went to put a new roof on the church.
“It is a family-friendly event and there is always something for everyone who attends,” commented Bonnie De Mar, organizer of this year’s Oktoberfest. “The food that we serve has expanded to include international cuisine from around the world and our entertainment continues to grow.”
The festivities will kick off on Friday evening, October 2 at 6 pm with The Funsters. The international food court this year will be serving traditional German entrees, along with Italian, Hispanic, Polish, and Filipino dishes. Homemade crab cakes, hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries, Italian ice, pretzels, and homemade baked desserts will also be on the menu. A favorite among attendees is the homemade ice cream which will be available again this year.
On Saturday the festivities include arts and crafts, a white elephant gift exchange, helicopter rides, over 100 homemade desserts, and entertainment throughout the day. Kids will be able to enjoy inflatable games including a slide, moon walk, and obstacle course. A petting zoo and pony rides will be open for children to enjoy as well. The Milford Community Band will entertain guests on Saturday morning followed by the internationally renowned, Joe Kroboth German Orchestra. During this time the Enzian German Dancers and the Irish School of Dancing and a new dance group, the Ballet Folklorico Latino Dancers will entertain guests. On Saturday evening at 6 pm the Honeycombs, who have been with the event for most of the twenty five years, will wind down the weekend.
“I love the Oktoberfest festival,” commented Bonnie De Mar. “It is a chance to see neighbors that you only see this one time a year and it is fun to be able to listen and dance to the music during the event.”
St. John the Apostle’s Church welcomes all to enjoy the food, music and fun of the 25th Annual German Oktoberfest Weekend beginning on Friday, October 16 through Saturday, October 17. St. John’s Church is located on 506 Seabury Avenue and there is no admission fee. For more information call Bonnie De Mar 422-5123, ext. 13.