One thing you must try at Ohio's 46th annual Sauerkraut Festival is the German Sundae served by the Sons of the American Legion.  (Source: Facebook)

What’s cooking this year at the Ohio Sauerkraut Festival?

Back in 1970, when Lebanon residents randomly decided to add a sauerkraut dinner to a sidewalk sale, a curious hybrid was born.

A festival that now combines 60 sauerkraut-related food items with 460 craftspeople from 25 states and attracts over 350,000 people annually.

If you’re a fan of sauerkraut or crafts or both, here’s what you can expect to find at the 49th annual Ohio Sauerkraut Festival this weekend.

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The 48th Annual Ohio Sauerkraut Festival is scheduled for Oct. 14 and 15.
Photo: Staff Writer

1.) Sauerkraut in what?

It shouldn’t be surprising that a sauerkraut-oriented festival would produce some odd concoctions, like sauerkraut pizza (sauerkraut layered over cheese, mixed with sausages and onions), German sundaes (mashed potato with sauerkraut, cheese, sour cream), sauerkraut fudge, and sauerkraut donuts. Naturally, there are more conventional kraut items as well, such as foot-long hot dogs that include kraut along with the other usual fixings, and pork mash, which mixes kraut with mashed potatoes and pork. Other popular related items are cabbage rolls and Reuben rolls.

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Sauerkraut is served on everything, including pizza, at the Ohio Sauerkraut Festival in Waynesville. The operators say they are ready to cancel this year’s festival unless the village sets aside new rules.
Photo: Staff Writer

2.) Comfort Food

Assuming you’re a fan of crafts but not kraut, or are just a general festival connoisseur, there are plenty of non-kraut items to munch on, too, including brats, Polish sausage, pulled pork sandwiches, caramel apples, funnel cakes, soft pretzels and more.

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Who knew donuts with, um, sauerkraut could be so tasty? These treats are available at the Ohio Sauerkraut Festival.

3.) Arts and Crafts for 2017

There will be diverse craftspeople selling their wares in many categories. They are: 

Candles and potpourri (10 vendors), clothing accessories (34 vendors), country crafts/primitives (17 vendors), florals/wreaths/baskets (10 vendors), glass/ceramics/porcelain (23 vendors), holiday crafts (19 vendors), jewelry (37 vendors), leather (two vendors), lotions/soaps/spa products (16 vendors), metalwork (11 vendors), pet accessories (14 vendors), photography/artists/frames (23 vendors), pottery (four vendors), pre-packaged take home food/crafts (25 vendors), stitch/knitting/needle embroidery (27 vendors), toys/dolls (11 vendors), and wood crafts (43 vendors). 

There is also a miscellaneous category, which includes many domestic and lawn items such as bird feeders, fire pits and grills, plant supports, friendship trees, personalized clocks and more.

Now this is how you do a Reuben. This is the version of the classic sandwich found at the Ohio Sauerkraut Festival.

4.) Live music

The full live entertainment lineup includes Willow Creek bluegrass (bluegrass), Smithville South (pop, rock and R&B hits from the 1960s-present), the Michelle Robinson Band (rock and bluegrass covers), Wild Rice (dance), the Waynesville Marching Band, Counting Skeletons (danceable rock hits from 1980s-present), Locking Up Otis (classic rock hits), Timestamp (rock and alternative rock hits from the 1980s and 90s), and more.

Want to go?

WHAT: 49th Annual Sauerkraut Festival

WHEN: Oct. 13-14; 9 a.m.-8 pm. Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday

WHERE: Main Street, downtown Waynesville

COST: No admission cost

INFO: 513-897-8555 or 

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