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Evans City readies for annual Oktoberfest tradition

September 13, 2019 Digital Media Exclusive

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Rick Reifenstein, the voice of Oktoberfest, dawns traditional lederhosen during Evans City's Oktoberfest event in 2016.

The streets in Evans City will once again be closed for Oktoberfest from Sept. 20—22, with one change: now, it will feature beer and wine by the glass.

Even with the change, the Oktoberfest celebration, which co-chairwoman Marlene Domhoff said attracts 5,000 people annually, will remain the community-event charm it' has been for the past 33 years.

“This is an opportunity for people to get reacquainted with their neighbors,” Rick Reifenstein, who announces during the festival, added. “A lot of times in town we get too busy to do a lot of talking and conversing with neighbors like we used to when I was younger.”

More than 50 vendors will line Jackson Street and Wahl Avenue with craft vendors taking center stage. This year's crafts include handmade jewelry, wine glasses, wood-crafted products, crocheted stuffed animals and a cigar humidor.

But Oktoberfest wouldn't be complete without a vast diversity of foods. Among the 50 vendors are those serving pierogi, haluski, ribs, pulled pork and Amish doughnuts, and the foods can even be paired with beer and wine from the VFW's stand.

Reifenstein said he had been campaigning since the event began to include beer.

“If you're not going to have the beer, why call it Oktoberfest?” he asked.

This is an excerpt of a story that appears in Sunday's Butler Eagle.

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