Organizers of the Powell Oktoberfest believe the second year of the new-look event was twice as successful as last year’s version.
The festival was created in 2014 by the Heart of Powell, previously known as Historic Downtown Powell but lasted just two years. It was revitalized last year by the Olentangy Rotary Club and drew around 2,500 people Sept. 21 and 22 to Village Green Park, said Oktoberfest organizer Jerry Douglas.
Douglas said the group did not keep track of guests last year, but believes this year’s turnout was significantly higher than 2017.
“We thought that was great,” he said. “We feel it was more than last year, but we can’t really tell.”
He said this year’s event featured more food and beer offerings, as well as more activities for both children and their parents.
“The parents love to sit back and have a beer while the kids are playing,” he said, “and you might not be able to get to do that very often.”
The event also helped raise money for a variety of charities, with all Oktoberfest proceeds going toward charitable causes.
Douglas said the charities include a wide range of focuses, from international to local, including Delaware’s People in Need and Turning Point shelter.
He said the Rotary raised about $18,000 this year, more than doubling last year’s efforts. Next year, he said, the goal will be to double that number again.
Douglas said he thinks the community is beginning to respond positively to the festival, and added he and the Rotary think it’s “become a big event.”
“The goal is to make it a signature event,” he said, “and it’s really an event for all ages.”