Oktoberfest returns

SANDUSKY Beers, brats and a live polka band. Add in a cloudless, blue sky and mild temperatures and you've got the per
May 24, 2010



Beers, brats and a live polka band.

Add in a cloudless, blue sky and mild temperatures and you've got the perfect combination for a lively Oktoberfest celebration.

"The wind's blowing the bees away," said Gloria Lamb as she spread sauerkraut onto a bratwurst for a patron. "It's perfect weather."

Lamb was one of many volunteers with the Knights of Columbus who helped out at the event Saturday.

The Knights of Columbus and the city's Catholic community hosted the second annual Oktoberfest at the Erie County Fairgrounds. Holy Angels, Saint Mary's and Saints Peter and Paul collaborated efforts for the event.

Saturday's festivities brought out hundreds of people -- the young, the old and everyone in between. The event began at 1 p.m. and ended at 9 p.m.

Ex officio mayor and master of ceremonies Dan Kaman said more people came early Saturday compared to the previous year.

"Last year everybody came right at 4 for Mass," he said.

This year almost 1,000 people filled one of the fairgrounds' barns for the hour-long Mass. Every seat in the building was occupied and more than a dozen people stood along the walls to attend the only Mass offered that day in Sandusky.

There was plenty for patrons to do at the fairgrounds. The multipurpose building housed a German band where couples were seen dancing to polka music, enjoying a drink or two and spending time with family and friends.

"I thought they sounded great," said Randy Colvin, of Sandusky, following a German band's performance.

Richard and Wilma Seamon, of Bellevue, made a special stop at the fairgrounds during the afternoon to drink some beer and enjoy the atmosphere before heading into Sandusky for a day of shopping.

"We like the polka music," said Wilma Seamon. "We're not much dancers ... we're more lookers."

One building was set aside for children's games and activities. Another building was set aside for games and activities for adults, including card games, raffles and bingo. A miniature wine garden was also set up for the adult patrons.

Colvin said he also was looking forward to playing card games among other things.

Dinner tickets were sold at the entrance for $8. The dinner included German pork, sauerkraut, green beans, twice-baked potatoes and dinner rolls. Other items, including bratwurst, hamburgers, hot dogs, and root beer floats, were also sold.

Business was pretty steady Saturday at the bratwurst tent, said Judy Schmenk, another volunteer with the Knights of Columbus.

"The food's good," said Adriana Scavio, 13, a volunteer inside the children's activity building. "It's fun."