Looking for another summer festival?
The annual St. James Brats and Crafts Festival is scheduled Friday, Aug. 4, to Sunday, Aug. 6, at St. James Lutheran Church, 5660 Trabue Road, Columbus.
Parking and admission are free. Event hours and a schedule of activities are available at stjameslutheran.us.
Established by St. James parishioners more than three decades ago, the German-heritage festival has grown from a quaint church festival into a community event from which the profits benefit a variety of charities.
"We welcome everyone," said Steve Dodson, who has been chairman of the festival for 33 of its 34 years. (The festival didn't have a chairman its inaugural year.)
Proceeds from the event go to designated charities, which this year include Habitat for Humanity, Lutheran Social Services and Hilliard's food pantry.
Here's 5 Things to Know about the festival.Make sure to get seconds
Dodson estimates about 5,000 brats are made for the festival, as well as more than 1,000 pounds of German potato salad.
The church uses the services of a packing company to meet demand but the seasoning is closely guarded secret.
"Our brats are made with a secret family recipe that only two people know," Dodson sad.
The brat-making procedure is traced back to one of the original nine German immigrant families who founded St. James Lutheran Church in 1847.Bring a sweet tooth
The festival is equally famous for its homemade desserts.
Hundreds of parishioners make a variety of cakes and pies and a dessert chairwoman oversees the preparation and delivery of the goods, Dodson said.Check out these throwback uniforms
Don't miss the matchup between the Lutheran Strikers and the Ohio Village Muffins in a vintage "base ball" game at 4 p.m. Aug. 5.
The annual exhibition showcases baseball as it was played in the late 19th century.
Players eschew modern leather gloves and wield bats that look more like canoe paddles than pine-tarred Louisville Sluggers, while the umpire dons coattails and a cane.Wear dancing shoes
Music plays a central role in the three-day festival. Performers include Ken and Mary Turbo Accordions Express, the Central Ohio Squeezebox Society and the Hilliard Community Band.Brush up on your German
The festival concludes with a traditional German-language worship service led by Steven Maurer, a member of Christ Lutheran Church in Bexley.
Maurer began leading the annual service about 20 years ago upon learning that St. James considered ending its tradition because no members were sufficiently fluent. The service will last about an hour.