Devil’s Kettle Brewing customers will celebrate German heritage by drinking beer, eating pretzels and supporting the fight against breast cancer at its annual Oktoberfest on Saturday.
The brewery will host its celebration for the third consecutive year and mark the changing of seasons with good food and drinks from noon to 10 p.m. at its location on Columbus Road.
Devil’s Kettle owner Cameron Fuller has always had an interest in brewing traditional German lagers, which often coincide with specific months or times of the year. Although he has never been to the official Oktoberfest, which takes place in Munich each September, he knew he wanted to bring a taste of the celebration to Athens when he opened his brewery in 2015.
If you go:
What: Devil’s Kettle 3rd Annual Oktoberfest
When: 12-10 p.m., Saturday
Where: Devil’s Kettle Brewing, 97 Columbus Rd.
Fuller said he prefers to keep his Oktoberfest fun and casual, highlighting its differences from most other cultural events in Athens.
“It’s just a really good time,” he said. “Come for some really good food, come for some really good beer. We’ll play some German beer hall music and just have fun with it.”
Each year on the day of the celebration, Fuller releases his own Oktoberfest brew. This year, he will also sell one-liter German steins, as seen in German beer halls, full of his seasonal specialty for $20.
The brewery will team up with local vendors Pork and Pickles and Twisted Sisters Specialty Foods to feed festivalgoers. Pork and Pickles will supply German food like bratwursts, sauerkraut and kielbasa, and Twisted Sisters will sell its traditional German-style soft pretzels.
Tessa Evanosky, owner and sole operator of Twisted Sisters, was a bartender at Devil’s Kettle for two years. After making and selling pretzels for her friends and family, she began selling them at the brewery to coincide with Fuller’s German lagers.
Her business has grown since then, and she has been told her pretzel-making has improved. This year will be her third year selling at the Devil’s Kettle Oktoberfest.
“The bar crowd has been really supportive of my really small business,” Evanosky said. “It’s really nice to be around people who are like, ‘I remember your first batch. These are so much better.’”
A German soft pretzel, Evanosky said, is characterized by its dark outer crust. Although she uses a method that differs slightly from the traditional way to make them, her pretzels still have the dark brown color that differentiates German pretzels from commonly sold white ones.
Twisted Sisters sea salt pretzels will be available at the festival for $3.50, and specialty flavors will be sold for $4. Evanosky’s special beer mustard will also be for sale.
Fuller has also decided to include a charitable aspect in his cultural celebration. He donates 10 percent of all profits made from sales of his Oktoberfest brew to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation to coincide with October’s designation as Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Evanosky said she appreciates Fuller’s efforts to make his event about more than just personal profit.
“(Fuller) is a really good example of what business people should be like around here,” she said.
Julia Richards-Ward, a freshman studying pre-nursing, visited a past Oktoberfest in her hometown of Cuyahoga Falls. She said her favorite part of the celebration was the atmosphere, and although she has never been to Devil’s Kettle’s Oktoberfest, she imagines it will be a similar fun, small town event.
“It was really fun,” she said. “It was just a really nice place to be social and meet people from your area.”