Highland News Leader

Annual St. Paul Parish Kirchenfest set for this weekend in Highland

2018 Highland Kirchenfest

The annual St. Paul Kirchenfest will take place Friday, Aug. 23, through Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019, at St. Paul Church, 1412 Ninth St., Highland. The event started in 1971. This video is from the 2018 event.
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The annual St. Paul Kirchenfest will take place Friday, Aug. 23, through Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019, at St. Paul Church, 1412 Ninth St., Highland. The event started in 1971. This video is from the 2018 event.

Anyone looking for a challenging run or bike ride, a bags tournament, high quality musical entertainment or just some good old-fashioned rides and carnival fun, then St. Paul Church in Highland is the place to be this weekend.

The 49th annual St. Paul Kirchenfest will take place Friday-Sunday on the church grounds, 1412 Ninth St., Highland. The Kirchenfest started in 1970, and the schedule is 6-11 p.m. Friday; 6 a.m. to midnight Saturday; and 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.

“We’re expecting pretty large crowds from across the area from different states,” said Joe Horstmann, Kirchenfest chairman. “We’ll be offering a wide variety of German style foods, craft beer, beverages, games for the kids ... we’ll have multiple entertainment tents. I’m looking forward to it.”

This year’s event again will include the Strasssenlauf 10K, 5K, and 2K run/walk Saturday. The 10K/5K run starts at 7:30 a.m., and the 2K walk/run commences at 9 a.m. Rain or shine. Runners of all skill levels are welcome.

Kirchenfest also will feature the “Tour of Brats” 2019 bicycle race at 9 a.m. Sunday at Kirchenfest grounds. Registration is at 7 a.m. As the name suggests, bratwurst is involved, as, at the race’s conclusion, each rider is awarded a one minute time credit for each brat eaten (two max).

“Those are both very popular events. Both have really large turnouts and grow each year,” said Horstmann, in his fourth and final year as Kirchenfest chairman.

Another highlight is the mega flea market, which Horstmann said will feature more than 40,000 items.

“We have an incredible turnout for our flea market,” he said. “They work on it year round. It basically takes up the whole gym of the Catholic school. It’s a big, elaborate process for them.”

This year’s Kirchenfest also includes multiple new wrinkles, including performances from the drum lines at Highland High School and Mater Dei High School. A master illusionist represents another first-year feature.

“I feel bringing on new things adds excitement to the event and evolves it,” Horstmann said. “I’m looking forward to the newer things.”

Other event include a korbball tournament (3-on-3 basketball), Kirchenfest bags tournament, bingo, and more. People also can enjoy kitchen kraft corner, the alumni tent and raffles. A car giveaway will take place at 8 p.m. Sunday.

Kirchenfest also willi include musical performances from St. Paul Viking Band, Buffalo Road, The Good Times, Hair Syndicate and more. Additionally, The Heidelberg Band, a German group out of Quincy, Illinois, will make its inaugural appearance at Kirchenfest.

Motown Review, who Horstmann said is a popular draw, caps off the event Sunday night. Admission to all these performances is free.

“We have all sorts of entertainment under our tents,” Horstmann said.

The various games at Kirchenfest include 1913 race horse, furious fowl, I dood It, frogger, the pig race, tic tac toe, sports wheel, fish on, skeeball, beer stein hoopla, bean bag toss, putt putt golf and more.

Rides include turbo tub, wrecking ball, spinner ride and giant fun slide. Kids also can enjoy an inflatable playland, which will include several colorful inflatable slides and bouncy rounds. Additionally, St. Paul will offer mass at 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 7:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. Sunday.

For more information, visit https://stpaulkirchenfest.com

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