A Cultural Experience in Your Own Backyard!

TOLEDO, Ohio, Aug. 10, 2012 - For the last 47 years, the German-American Festival Society, made up of seven local organizations, has been proud to host the German-American Festival (GAF) in Oregon, Ohio. The purpose of the festival is to promote and enhance the German and Swiss cultures in the Greater Toledo Area. The GAF also helps to generate revenue that allows for scholarships and funding to local students and organizations. And while food and drink are often a large part of what differentiates a culture, the GAF strives to show all aspects of the German and Swiss culture through varied activities and festival offerings. The GAF is Aug. 24-26.

Music makes an important statement about a culture. An attraction that has become a favorite at the GAF over the last eight years is the human Glockenspiel. In our take on the famous attraction in Munich, come watch as members of the Holzhacker Buam Schuhplatter Gruppe provide entertainment on the hour.

The festival offers continuous music from three stages throughout the festival weekend. Musical groups include Polka Floyd, Jay Fox, Phenix – new to the GAF – and the featured band, Austrian Express from Milwaukee, Wisn. Festival attendees can also expect plenty of local entertainment from the Polish American Concert Band and the Holzhacker Buam Schuhplattlergruppe.

Round out your cultural experience with a stop at the Swiss Essen Haus. This indoor/outdoor Swiss Bäckerei features a number of imported cheeses, breads and meats, and offers a true taste of the Swiss culinary culture.

The Sunday morning service is another great way to experience the culture of the GAF. The service begins at 10:30 a.m. Aug. 26, and is performed in German, with an English sermon by Pastor James R. VanBrussel. It features special music by the local Teutonia Männerchor & Damenchor and the Toledo Swiss Singers.

“The German worship service is a very moving experience,” explained Tim Pecsenye, Festival chairman. “To hear the German language and see families and the general community come together and participate is a great reminder of why we do this every year.”

These are just a few examples of the many activities that make up the GAF experience. The costumes, the food, the music and most importantly, the people make this event a truly authentic experience. So be sure to stop by Oak Shade Grove Friday Aug. 24 through Sunday, Aug. 26, to take a break from the everyday and enjoy a vacation in your backyard.

About the German-American Festival. The Festival is operated by the G.A.F Society, which is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. It is sponsored by the seven German- and Swiss-American societies in Toledo, and is intended to promote and enhance the German and Swiss cultures,
as well as generate revenue to support the German and Swiss cultural center in Oregon, along with a variety of scholarship, athletic and philanthropic programs in the Toledo area.

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