54th German-American Festival broke attendance records

Press Staff Writer

        The 54th annual German-American Festival, held Aug. 23-25, broke attendance records, with nearly 40,000 people attending – a 15% increase over last year and an increase of 45% over the past five years.
        Andrew Beavis, Festival Marketing Chair thanked GAF volunteers and the 25 charity groups volunteering and working hard to make the festival a success,
        “The GAF is the oldest and largest ethnic festival in the Toledo-area and would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of our volunteers,” he said. “A heartfelt thank you to all who helped continue this great tradition and put in the extra effort to make it bigger and better than ever.
        “To show our appreciation for their hard work, we’re giving donations in excess of $40,000 back to these outstanding charities,” he said.
        The purpose of the German-American Festival (GAF) is to promote and enhance the German and Swiss cultures, as well as generate revenue to support the German and Swiss cultural center in Oregon and provide a wide variety of scholarship, athletic and other philanthropic programs in the Toledo area. Revenue generated at this year’s Festival will go to a variety of organizations that support the GAF mission.
        As always, this year’s festival provided plenty of activities and entertainment for attendees of all ages. “From live music on four stages and the Old-World style outdoor Bier and Wein Garten to the second-annual Beer Mile, fan-favorite foods, amusement rides for the kids, the ever-popular Glockenspiel, traditional German and Swiss contests, and much more. It was a year to be remembered,” Beavis said.
        This year, GAF went through more than 1,000 kegs and virtually sold out of all of the beer and food on site. Specifically, 900 pounds of roasted almonds were sold (an increase of 29% in sales). Crowds consumed more than 4,000 lbs. of red potatoes between the famous potato salad and potato pancakes and 3,300 pounds of French fries, along with 2,400 schnitzel sandwiches, 1,775 funnel cakes and 1,400 pounds of sauerkraut balls just to mention a few.
        Kathy Christner was the big winner in the raffle for a two-year lease on a 2019 X2 BMW 2.8i. For other raffle winners and results of the Steinstossen, Hummel and Masskrugstemmen contests from both Saturday and Sunday, visit http://www.germanamericanfestival.net/.


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