GALION — Planning and fundraising continues for the 2021 edition of Galion Oktoberfest.
The longtime community festival is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 30 through Saturday, Oct. 2 in Uptowne Galion, returning after going on hiatus last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’re giving it all we’ve got,” festival organizer Travis Wolford said. “We have most of the same food vendors with a few new ones that I’m excited about. CJ’s Concessions from Galion will be here. Ken McBride, who has that awesome Italian sausage, will be back. Aah Teas makes fresh-brewed flavored tea with fruit-flavored bubbles. I tasted that at the Crawford County Fair and just had to have them at Oktoberfest.
“Of course, we’ll have bourbon chicken that everyone likes. We’ll have barbecue, snow cones, fried veggies, ice cream, a guy who cooks exotic meat, and funnel cakes, of course. And we will have rides and the craft show again.”
Wolford said the festival beer garden will be offered all three days.
Headlining the entertainment lineup for the festival is Floyd Live, a Pink Floyd tribute band known for providing audiences with “The Authentic Sound of Pink Floyd.” Floyd Live is scheduled to perform from 8:30 to 11 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 2.
“They’re going to be absolutely mind-blowing,” Wolford said. “They have an amazing laser light show. They do all the special effects. They sound phenomenal.”
Bluegrass and country music will be the focus on Friday, Oct. 1 when the Kickin’ Grass Band and the Terry Douglas Band hit the Oktoberfest stage. Kickin’ Grass, a bluegrass group based out of Crawford County, is a popular group that plays fairs, festivals, and private events across the region. Kickin’ Grass is scheduled to perform from 5 to 7 p.m. on Oct. 1, according to the festival website.
The Terry Douglas Band, based in Thornville, Ohio, plays “a mix of classic country, honky-tonk, and old school rock and roll,” according to its website. The band has released three albums since 2017 with its most recent offering “Through the Storm” dropping in November 2020. The Terry Douglas Band is set to do their show from 9 to 11 p.m. on Oct. 1, according to the Oktoberfest website.
“I’ve seen the Terry Douglas Band and they’re awesome,” Wolford said. “They play authentic country, just the good old country music.”
Musical entertainment begins on Thursday, Sept. 30 with an afternoon and evening of Christian music by local artists and groups. Local residents Carol Kable and Bill Seymour are organizing Thursday’s musical lineup. Kable said they’re still in the process of booking talent for the opening day of music at Oktoberfest. Kable said the plan is to have music on stage from noon to 9 p.m.
Wolford said fundraising for the festival has been difficult due the economic impact the pandemic has had on local businesses. He said he is thankful for the support the festival has received from businesses and organizations that are in a position to donate to it.
Wolford said major donations have so far come from Central State Enterprises, Sleep Inn & Suites, 1803 Brewery & Taproom, Firelands Federal Credit Union, and Tidy Tim’s Inc. Portable Restrooms & Septic Service.
Wolford said any businesses, individuals, or groups interested in serving as volunteers or sponsoring Oktoberfest can contact him at 419-777-7768. Information about the craft show and sponsorships is available on the Galion Oktoberfest website at galionoktoberfest.com.
Wolford said the Galion chapter of the League of Riders Motorcycle Club is sponsoring a poker run on the Saturday of Oktoberfest.Proceeds from the ride will benefit the Galion Police Department. For information about the poker run, go to the League of Riders Motorcycle Club Ohio page on Facebook.