Authentic German food, music and culture will be part of the celebration at the 31st annual St. James Brats and Crafts Festival from Aug. 1-3 at St. James Lutheran Church, 5660 Trabue Road.
"It's a great family event that benefits our community because all the proceeds go to charity," said Steve Dodson, festival chairman.
Parking and admission to the festival are free. The festival will run from 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1, noon to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 3.
Dodson said the event seems to grow each year and he believes its success is built on the food and entertainment, but also the charities it supports.
This year's charities include Habitat for Humanity, the Hilliard Community Assistance Council and the free meal program that St. James Lutheran Church hosts each Tuesday.
Dodson said aside from the authentic German food and homemade desserts -- which are in recognition of the nine German families who immigrated to central Ohio in 1847 and founded St. James -- the entertainment will be an equal attraction.
Entertainment on Friday, Aug. 1, will include strolling musicians and a performance at 6:30 p.m. by Ken and Mary Turbo Accordions Express.
A hot air balloon launch, weather permitting, also is planned.
The next day, Aug. 2, the Hilliard Community Band will perform at 2 p.m. The Country Steps Cloggers will perform at 4:15 p.m., followed by an encore of the Turbo Accordions at 6:30 p.m.
In addition, the St. James' softball team, the Lutheran Strikers, will play against the Ohio Village Muffins at 4 p.m.
The Ohio Village Muffins play baseball using Civil War-era rules in which the players do not wear leather gloves and wield a bat that resembles a canoe paddle.
Activities will conclude Aug. 3 with an outdoor children's Sunday school program with a juggler and a mime at 9:30 a.m.
The Columbus Maennerchor will perform at 1:30 p.m. and the festival will conclude with the church's annual worship service delivered in German at 2:30 p.m. Aug. 3 in the sanctuary.
For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit stjameslutheran.us.