The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

October 9, 2012

Wittenberg Oktoberfest slated Saturday

By Sarah Plummer
Register-Herald Reporter

— Bring your lederhosen and get ready for some beer and bratwurst at the first-ever St. Luke’s Lutheran Church’s Wittenberg Oktoberfest Saturday from 2 to 8 p.m.

Pastor Wanda Childs explained that Lutherans have a long tradition of German cuisine and drinking good beer. In fact, Martin Luther, the founder of Protestantism, famously said that he did nothing to launch the great Protestant Reformation, but drank Wittenberg beer while the Word of God did everything.

And while this event is anticipated to be filled with good food and family fun, it’s also about raising money for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s (ELCA) Malaria Campaign.

Malaria kills 800,000 people each year; most are children under 5. The ELCA Malaria Campaign funds programs that provide medicine to treat malaria, train health care providers to diagnose and treat malaria and teach people how to protect themselves from the mosquitoes that spread malaria.

“We can’t think of a better way to celebrate our German heritage and cultural traditions than to have an Oktoberfest,” said Childs.

Beer will be provided by Mountain State Brewing Co., Bridge Brew Works and some local home-brewers.

The festival will also offer traditional German cuisine like brats, sauerkraut, German potato salad, cucumber salad and German black bread.

Children will have root beer and fun activities like bobbing for apples, corn hole, face painting and inflatables.

Local legends The Boatmen, Poor Taters and Jean Hanna Davis will be providing music for the fest.

Vendors will be selling crafts and other goods at the event, too.

“We are hoping this will be something we can do every year and be recognized as a fun family event,” said Childs. “Our area does not have a large Lutheran community and we hope this is a way we can share who we are through some of our traditions.”

The festival is $10 admission for legal adults and $5 for people 20 and under. Admission includes two beverage tickets and additional beverage tickets can be purchased for $1.

The event is cash only.

St. Luke Lutheran Church is located at 700 Maxwell Hill Road. For more information visit the Wittenberg Oktoberfest Facebook page.

— E-mail: splummer@register-herald.com