Elkton’s annual Oktoberfest draws a crowd

October 1, 2018
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Gage, a 3-year-old poodle, remains at attention while the Roseburg German Band plays Saturday at the 10th-annual Elkton Oktoberfest. Pictured from left to right are band members Gale Cleveland, Gloria Mittleman, Gage’s owner, Rick Weber and Jim Rogers.

ELKTON — The oompah, oompah sound of the band carried in the wind, along with the aroma of German sausage.

And about 250 people from towns all around the county gathered to enjoy it Saturday at the annual Oktoberfest at the Elkton Community Education Center.

Wyatt Tjoelker and Anna Fall, both juniors at Elkton High School busily worked away at converting apples into fresh cider, which they poured into jars to sell to thirsty festival-goers.

Fall said her father bought a cider press five years ago, and it made sense to bring it out Saturday to help raise funds for ECEC.

It takes about 15 minutes to squeeze enough apples to make two quarts and two pints of cider, she said.

The efforts make the cider taste all the sweeter, Fall said.

“You also get satisfaction at the end when you’re drinking it, because you made it,” she said.

Fall said she was surprised how popular the cider was at Oktoberfest. She hopes to convince other people to take up cider pressing, too.

Walt Stocker, who drove up from his Reedsport home to attend the event, took a swig of cider and declared it good.

“It’s actually better than 7-Up,” he said.

For Janette and George Duff of Rice Hill, the best part of Oktoberfest was dancing to traditional German music. Janette Duff said there’s no particular dance style required.

“You just do what you like,” she said. She loves the music.

“It’s jolly,” she said.

Jack Tannehill of Roseburg attended with his wife Cherill Tannehill. He said the German chocolate cake was in itself worth the trip.

And they liked the band, too.

“We’ve heard them two or three times and they’re very impressive,” he said.

The Tannehills had been working hard lately canning grape juice.

“This is our fun day for working so hard,” Jack Tannehill said.

John Ferguson of Roseburg plays the baritone horn and the Alp horn in the Roseburg German Band. He’s been with the band since 1967, and he loves it.

Ferguson spent one of his college school years in Germany, where he visited beer halls and heard different bands play. He likes how upbeat the music is.

“I like the attitude that it promotes. It’s festive,” he said.

Ferguson loves Elkton’s Oktoberfest.

“I think this is supreme,” he said. “We’ve been coming over here every year since they started.”

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