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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Oktoberfest brings folks together to celebrate in German style


Decked out in Alpine hats,  lederhosen, and OMT t-shirts,  folks of all ages were  eager to tap all the flavors of Oktoberfest at Naper Settlement Friday evening.

“We’re thrilled with this Friday night crowd,  especially with the high school football game at Naperville Central High School and the Prairie Classic going on over at North Central College,” said Peggy Frank, Executive Director of the 19th century outdoor history museum.

Oktoberfest is set to bring back the sights and sounds  of Naperville’s  German heritage in the bigger-than-ever tent that  fills  the Village Green  of the city’s 19th century outdoor history museum again on Saturday.

When gates open through the Pre-Emption House at 11AM Saturday, the price of admission is $15 adult (13+), $10 youth (4-12). Family activities, live music and other festivities are scheduled from 11AM-5PM Saturday afternoon. Oktoberfest continues until 10PM.

Visitors to Oktoberfest also can experience activities in the village centered around the “Harvest” theme until 4PM. For instance, while there’s upbeat  music in  the air, learn about root cellars, food preservation and canning. Take a turn at the cider press and sample the sweet taste of apples. Also,  grind corn or create a corn husk doll.

Editor’s Note: That Prairie Classic game at North Central College mentioned up top was played between Waubonsie Valley and Neuqua Valley high schools. The annual rivalry in School District 204 ended late in a  thrilling  nail biter that went into two overtimes, finishing with a final score of 35-34 and a NVHS victory.

Click any photo to enlarge the album. Thanks!

Friday’s Wrap Up

With a chill in the autumn evening,  some 700 individuals helped to  kick off the 2-day event to benefit the Naperville Heritage Society and Naper Settlement, organizers said.

After a lively dose of oom-pah-pah from Bavarian bands, Dick Kuhn and Naperville’s homegrown band,  One More Time (OMT), took the stage at 8PM.  Moments before OMT band members struck their first chord,  John Zediker and  Steve Grosskopf, members  of the Naperville Heritage Society Board of Directors, stepped up to the microphone to recognize Frank who recently announced her retirement.  After 33 years, Frank will step down at the end of 2012.

Frank graciously thanked the large crowd for its support and  for participating in the history of the community.

Then the music began again and everyone under the big heated tent continued to partake in camaraderie,  dancing, pretzels, beer, bratwurst and other Bavarian accents served up by My Chef Catering.


The fun and  live music will return Saturday, with opportunities to tour the history village that celebrates the arrival of German immigrants in the 1800s.

Early in the afternoon, bands from The School of Rock will play. Also, another popular band with Naperville roots, The Near Beer Band,  performs on stage at 2PM Saturday afternoon.

Saturday’s schedule also  includes  classic oom-pah at 4PM from Ron Keller’s German Band followed at 6PM by the Die Musikmeisters.  Then  classic rock from The Legends begins at 8PM. The Legends, known throughout Chicagoland, also have connections to Naperville.

This community has no shortage of talent! Thanks for supporting the performing arts while enjoying some great German traditions with a taste of local history.

For the complete schedule, menu and other choices, visit Oktoberfest.

Sunday at Naper Settlement

Heritage Hall of Honor will recognize several longtime supporters at 2PM Sun., Oct. 7.  The public event will be held at 523 S. Webster St.

Heritage Hall of Honor

The Distinguished Heritage Hall of Honor recognizes and honors those who have enthusiastically supported preserving Naperville’s rich and storied history, and demonstrated a high level of commitment to Naper Settlement and the Heritage Society’s mission of historic preservation and education. The 2012 honorees are Nancy Brown Stoneberg and Thomas Brown, Bob Jansen, Dave Kelsch, North Central College, Pat and Don Shanower and Sullivan’s Steakhouse.

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PN Editor
PN Editor
An editor is someone who prepares content for publishing. It entered English, the American Language, via French. Its modern sense for newspapers has been around since about 1800.