The Manteno Oktoberfest was the vision of a few volunteers 15 years ago and was originally one block. It has grown from a small one or two-day event to four days and includes five blocks of Main Street, as well as one block on Oak Street. The event is now sponsored by the Manteno Chamber of Commerce and area businesses; however, the Fest is still run by volunteers. The Oktoberfest Committee meets monthly beginning in February and finishes up with a wrap-up meeting in October.
The Fest has something to offer all ages, from one to 100. Kid's games are located in the American Legion Park along with the Family Stage, where Six-String Shoot Out and Talent Shows are held as well as Strongman Contest and Showcasing of Bands. Walking south on Main Street, the carnival offers a variety of rides and games for all and there is not a lack of Food Vendors to satisfy everyone's palate. Looking for something special? Visitors may find it at the Craft Show or at the Street Vendors displays. And on the south side of Division Street, don't forget to pick up your pumpkins and mums for your autumn decorating.
Continuing on south, the Food Tent is located just before the Beer Garden. The Beer Garden offers entertainment and contests for everyone. An adult Bean Bag game is held on Thursday evening and a 17 and older contest on Sunday. Saturday afternoon, there's a live radio broadcast . . . and on both Friday and Saturday evenings, Oktoberfest features live musical entertainment. It's like a large, loud Manteno reunion.
Two events people look forward to are the Pet Parade and the Lighted Parade. Many pets have been adopted through our Pet Parade and families, businesses, organizations and churches show their creative sides with their floats. The streets of Manteno are closed off to give people the opportunity to enjoy both of these parades.
With the community-wide Garage Sales beginning on Friday and running through Sunday, the Fest truly offers something for everyone. And anyone looking for some hardcore fun should enter the Lawn Mower Poker Run on Sunday after running the Educational Foundation 5-K Run.
The Fest, originally for the citizens of Manteno, now draws people county wide as well as from the southern and western suburbs. It is an event full of fun activities!
The Manteno Oktoberfest is made possible due to the hard work and dedication of many volunteers. Actually all the work is done on a volunteer basis. So anyone wanting to experience community pride and self-fulfillment should attend the monthly meetings held on the 4th Wednesday of each month.
Wednesday, August 22
Wednesday, September 12
Wednesday, September 26
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Manteno American Legion (Walnut Street)