Oktoberfest makes tasty return

Clear skies and sunshine made the perfect setting for vendors as they prepared their booths Wednesday morning in anticipation of the 45th annual Oktoberfest in downtown Seymour.

Volunteers with some of the 12 nonprofit organizations were especially thankful for the sunshine because good weather means better attendance, which in turns leads to more money raised for charities.

Knights of Columbus Council 1252

“The weather makes a big difference on how much we can raise for those in need,” said Pat Reinhart, Knights of Columbus member and volunteer. “Good weather helps everybody.”

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The organization had a vending booth at the first Seymour Oktoberfest 45 years ago when the festival first began.

It has had a booth set up every year since, said Jim Hoffmeier, a Knights of Columbus member and volunteer.

“Connie Geis and I are also volunteers, and we started making the potato salad early this morning around 7 a.m.,” Sylviane Matzner said. “The original potato salad recipe was created by Fred and Louise Schlatterer.”

A longtime volunteer of the Knights of Columbus, Fred recently passed away. The organization had the pleasure of working with him every year on opening day of Oktoberfest, and he worked tirelessly each day of the event, Hoffmeier said.

Funds raised at the booth go toward agencies in the community that help people in need, financial secretary Dave Rossi said.

“Including but not limited to St. Ambrose church, Anchor House and other organizations,” he said.

The menu: German brats and sausages, sauerkraut, potato salad and drinks.

Boy Scouts of America Troop 529

Volunteers were busy working and preparing food Wednesday morning at the Boy Scout Troop 529 booth, including Samantha Kirby.

Kirby is stepping down from being the festival organizer for the group after this year. It’s a job she has held for the past five years.

“Kristi Murphy will be taking over for me,” Kirby said. “I know we’ve had a booth in Oktoberfest for at least 20 years, and it has been the only Boy Scout booth here.”

Kirby said she starts getting ready for the event about a month or so ahead of time, and then the boys start cleaning and getting things ready.

“We are one of the only booths who are open for lunch on Wednesday,” she said. “Also, we’re open for dinner on Wednesday night since they allow nonprofits to do that.”

First United Methodist Church sponsors the troop, and the booth is stored at the church the rest of the year.

“As far as volunteers go, every parent that has a child in Boy Scouts volunteers at least a couple of shifts,” Kirby said. “Every Boy Scout member also volunteers at least a couple of shifts, so it’s all run by volunteers.”

Scout members and brothers Kerrick and Kyler Leslie were busy helping with preparations, counting packages of hamburger buns and filling the ice chest with bottles of drinks.

They are both homeschooled, so they had time to help downtown at the booth.

“The other kids who are in school will help out in the evenings and then also on Friday and Saturday when school’s out,” Kirby said. “Today, Chris Bryant is our volunteer grill master, grilling the burgers and hot dogs for us.”

The money earned at the booth will go toward paying for camping, food for camping trips, supplies they need throughout the year and basic camping needs.

“We have a group of boys doing a high adventure camp this year, which is a little different from regular Boy Scout camp,” Kirby said. “They’ll be going to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. A couple years ago, we had some boys go to the Bahamas for Sea Base.”

The menu: hamburgers, hot dogs, grilled cheese, drinks and desserts. Persimmon pudding is the biggest seller.

Psi Iota Xi

Psi Iota Xi once again has its Reuben booth at the Oktoberfest.

Carolyn Canaday, a sorority member and volunteer, was overseeing the delivery of a new refrigerator from Luecke Audio Video & Appliance during setup time Wednesday morning.

“It takes about a month to get the planning stages down, like when to pick up things,” Canaday said. “We’ve had this booth for many years, so we kind of know the ropes. I believe we’ve had a booth here from the start of Oktoberfest.”

Funds from food sold at the booth stays mostly in Jackson County and goes toward speech and hearing, art, music and literacy programs. A portion of the funds go to Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health.

Canaday agrees that weather plays an important part in the success of Oktoberfest.

“When it rains, we have a pretty sorry year, but last year, we sold out two or three times,” Canaday said. “So before Saturday was up, we were scrambling, trying to find corned beef for the sandwiches to get us through to Saturday night.”

The menu: reubens, pretzels with cheese, pickles, chips and drinks.

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45th annual Seymour Oktoberfest


10 a.m. to noon: Baking contest sponsored by Aldi at the Community Foundation of Jackson County, 107 Community Drive

11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Food, activity and arts and crafts booths open

11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Biergarten open

5 to 11 p.m.: Carnival open (ride bracelets $20), Second Street and Indianapolis Avenue

6 to 8 p.m.: Registration for the baby contest sponsored by Schneck Medical Center, near the information booth

Throughout the day: Roving musicians, including Larry VonEssen (accordionist), Lost Mill String Band and The Spoon Man

South Stage on South Chestnut Street

5 to 6 p.m.: Cottonpatch (bluegrass)

6 to 7 p.m: Stars & Stripes Cloggers

7 to 11 p.m. Monday Night Special and Deer Creek (bluegrass)

German American Bank Stage on West Second Street

6:30 to 10:30 p.m.: Schulhaus 4+3 (German band sponsored by German American Bank)

North Stage at Third and Chestnut streets

4:45 to 5:30 p.m.: Opening ceremonies featuring the Seymour High School band

5:30 to 6 p.m.: Booth awards, window decorating awards and baking contest awards

6 to 6:30 p.m.: Princess contest sponsored by Epsilon Sigma Alpha Sorority

8 p.m.: Rusty Bladen & The Unstoppables concert


11 a.m. to 11 p.m: Food, activity, arts and crafts booths open

11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Biergarten open

1 to 11 p.m.: Carnival open (ride bracelets honored from 1 to 5 p.m. and are available for $20 at the ticket booth)

6 to 8 p.m. Registration for the baby contest, near the information booth

7:30 to 8:30 p.m.: Hot air balloon glow sponsored by RE/MAX Professionals, grass lot on the corner of Fifth and Walnut streets

Throughout the day: Roving musicians, including Larry VonEssen (accordionist), Lost Mill String Band and The Spoon Man

North Stage

6 to 7:30 p.m.: These Fine Gentlemen concert

8 p.m.: The Lasting Hope concert

South Stage

5 to 5:30 p.m.: Brown Bouncing Bears

5:30 to 6:30 p.m.: Anchor House presents Hairless for the Homeless

7 to 11 p.m.: Bluegrass music featuring Liberty Hill, Hallelujah Hillbillies, Hoosier Hills

German American Bank Stage

6:30 to 10:30 p.m.: Schulhaus 4 +3


7 to 8 a.m.: Registration for the 5K walk/run, Seymour High School commons area

8 a.m.: 5K walk/run

9 a.m.: Cornhole tournament registration sponsored by Seymour Wrestling Club, grass lot at Fifth and Walnut streets

10 a.m.: Cornhole tournament

10:30 a.m. to noon: Registration for the horseshoe tournament sponsored by Seymour Parks & Recreation Department, Gaiser Park

11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Food, activity, arts and crafts booths open

11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Biergarten open

Noon: Horseshoe tournament

Throughout the day: Roving musicians, including Larry VonEssen (accordionist), Lost Mill String Band, The Spoon Man and Cincy Circus

1 p.m. to 11 p.m.: Carnival open

1:30 p.m.: Parade

4 p.m.: Game of S.K.A.T.E., Schurman-Grubb Memorial Skate Park

4 p.m.: Stein hoist, Biergarten

4 p.m.: Hot air balloons arrive, grass lot on the corner of Fifth and Walnut streets

5:15 p.m.: Hot air balloon race sponsored by RE/MAX Professionals

North Stage

9:30 to 10:30 a.m.: Baby contest sponsored by Schneck Medical Center

3 to 5 p.m.: Southern Indiana Taiko Japanese Drums

5 p.m.: Presentation of parade trophies

6:30 p.m.: Brat eating contest sponsored by 96.3 WJAA, Circle K and Pepsi

7:30 to 9 p.m.: Talent show sponsored by Staff Management SMX

South Stage

2 to 3 p.m.: Country Kickers

3 to 4:45 p.m.: Cornerstone Praise Team

5 to 6:45 p.m.: Seymour Harvest Praise Team

7 to 11 p.m.: Bluegrass music featuring Infinity, Midwest Station and Alley Katz-N-Jammers

German American Bank Stage

2:30 to 4 p.m.: Schulhaus 4+3 (German band)

6:30 to 10:30 p.m.: Schulhaus 4+3

7 p.m.: Polka/chicken dance contest sponsored by German American Bank