Toasting to Oktoberfest



By Kevin Romanchik

Touchdowns on the gridiron, the pouring of the apple cider and baking of cake donuts. It’s almost time for Oktoberfest.

In Rochester Hills, the annual celebration of Oktoberfest at local microbrewery Rochester Mills Beer Co. on Sept. 22-24, is high up on the community’s list.

For 13 years, Rochester Mills Beer Co. has been hosting an event to celebrate the internationally famous Oktoberfest, a festival that originated in Bavaria, Germany over two hundred years ago.

The weekend kicks off on Thursday, Sept. 22 with the ceremonial tapping of the first keg with the Mayor of Rochester Hills, Bryan Barnett and Mayor of Rochester, David Katulic.

While the beer may be focus in some highs, David Youngman, Director of Marking Communications for Rochester Mills Beer Co, explains that it is more than just an attraction for the legal crowd.

“It really is an event for all ages,” Youngman said. “There is something for everyone this year.”

On top of the traditional Oktoberfest items, the weekend kicks off on Sept. 22 with a free “Rocktoberfest” concert in the tent outside the building with performance from the teens attending the School of Rock and JC Drums Music School as well as a skateboard “Game of Skate” session and demo hosted by South Street Skate Shop.

“We were approached by David (Youngman) with the idea to optimize the outdoors tent along with attracting a younger crowd,” Linda Gallaher, co-owner of South Street Skate Shop, said. “We love to do business with local companies.”

The rest of the weekend will consist of live Oompah and polka music, Oktoberfest styled food and drink, as well as children’s activities.

The festival tent is open from 5-11 p.m. on Friday and 1-11 p.m. on Saturday. Admission to the event costs $5 for adults. Children 16 years-old and under get in for free.

All proceeds from event benefit the Make-A-Wish foundation of Michigan and YMCA North Oakland County Waves swim club.