Robert Pollock will open the Oktoberfest on Sunday with the joyful sounds from his 1903 Wurlitzer 125 Military Band Organ.
The organ was designed originally to be played in skating rinks and carousals. It has 101 wooden and brass pipes which imitate an eight-person band. The organ was rebuilt in 1984 and brought to the Oktoberfest by his father, Clifford R. Pollock from 1985-1991 and his mother, Mary Pollock from 1992-2016.
Robert picked up the reins in 2017 and is happy to carry on the tradition of bringing music to the Oktoberfest. The music will include polkas, waltzes and marches from the 1910s–1940s era.
Tom Kushmaul will provide keyboard and vocal music from noon to 2 p.m., spanning the decades with ragtime, polka, popular standards and jazz. A professional musician and musical director for over 30 years, he has lived in Urbana since 2003.
Since the early days of our local Oktoberfest, a German “Oom Pah” band has been strolling the grounds playing polkas and mazurkas in the style of those played in Munich this time of year. Members of this year’s “Katzenjammer Band” include Karen Hayden and David Sapp (clarinets), Bob Day (trumpet), Dave Martin (trombone), and Dan Walter (tuba). A good time to catch the band is 2-3 p.m. Sunday on the museum grounds.
Lois Monroe, children’s area chairman, is offering the children an opportunity to create a memento to take home. Crafts such as making a pretzel necklace, decorating a gingerbread heart or making a scarecrow are sure to keep little hands busy.
In addition, Nicole White,will have small pumpkins to purchase and decorate, Erin Patton, State Farm Insurance, will have a photo op to record the day and Lola Crawford will be decorating faces. This is the first year children’s activities have been offered and the ladies are excited to be part of it.