The Delaware Saengerbund is a German-American singing society founded in March 1853, which became an important social club for newly arriving German immigrants. Although choral music is still important to the Saengerbund, its activities now encourage the study and use of the German language, culture, traditions and customs. They share the traditional sociability among the German community at large and seek to foster a better understanding of the contributions made by German immigrants to the American way of life.
The Delaware Saengerbund is best known in Delaware through its annual Oktoberfest event. Although the first Volksfest was held in Wilmington's Schuetzen Park 1883, the modern Munich-style Oktoberfest first began in 1979. The roots of this fall festival are in Bavaria, when it was first celebrated as a wedding festivity for the crown prince of Bavaria on October 12, 1810. Because of weather considerations, the Delaware Saengerbund Oktoberfest is always held on the third week of September (the same weekend as Munich). Nearly 20,000 people attend the three-day festival which features Bavarian bands and folk dancing. Dancers in colorful costumes perform the Schuhplattler, or "shoe slapping" dance, along with other German folk dances. Also featured during the event are German foods, including the famous German potato salad prepared by the Ladies of the Delaware Saengerbund.
Delaware Saengerbund is a members only 501 (c)(4) non-profit fraternal organization which often has events open to the public.
Hours vary with the season and event (see website), but we are usually open every evening from 6:00-11:00 p.m. although summer months are more restricted.
Driving Directions & Parking
Near the intersection of Route 273 and Christina Parkway (Route 4). Large parking lot is available. Free (except during Oktoberfest where parking is provided off-street or at Christiana High School for $5.00 (to benefit the high school).
By car or by bus on DART Bus 34.
Other Visitor Information
The best time to visit the Delaware Saengerbund is during Oktoberfest on the third weekend of September. The all-day admission for 2018 is $9.00 which includes unlimited rides.
49 Salem Church Road
Newark, DE 19713
full map & directions
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