Lynfred Winery's Oktoberfest canceled after 40 years due to COVID 19 pandemic
Lynfred Winery recently announced that, based on an abundance of caution, it will be abandoning the annual Oktoberfest celebration. The winery's Oktoberfest celebration which began 40 years ago featured grape stomping, grape spitting and barrel races.
What made their Oktoberfest different then most? Wine. Lynfred only served wine, not beer, at the festival for 40 years!
"The annual Oktoberfest, Pig Roast and Grape Stomp became legendary in Chicago's northwest suburbs" says Lynfred Winery marketing director Christina Anderson-Heller. "We hosted over 2,500 people for one weekend a year on the winery property and featured accordion sing-a-longs and German oom-pah bands." The real highlight of the event was the grape stomping competitions for both children and adults.
Fred Koehler, founder of Lynfred Winery, was the inspiration behind the festival. His family came from a long line of winemakers in Germany, and he wanted to share his German heritage with his customers and neighbors. While Fred Koehler passed away in 2011, his legacy of Oktoberfest kept on.
"The festival was always meant to be a celebration of the grape harvest every fall" states Lynfred general manager, Andres Basso, "but with today's current situation it has caused us to step back and reevaluate the event and the public's safety. We are hoping to come back in a year or two with some new celebrations."
Lynfred Winery is the oldest and largest, continuously operating, family winery in Illinois, producing over 70 varietals and 30,000 cases of fine wine per year. Since 1979, the Lynfred Winery has offered guests the finest vintages, gourmet cuisine and luxurious lodging. Lynfred is truly one of Chicago's most unique attractions and features additional tasting rooms in Wheaton, Naperville and Wheeling.