By 10:45 a.m. Saturday, hundreds of local residents had converged on the Waxahachie Civic Center for the annual Oktoberfest, sponsored by St. Joseph Catholic School.

Mary Kay Volker was elated with not only the early response, but with the change in venue.

“This is a fantastic celebration for the community of Waxahachie,” Volker said. “This is such a change from previous years – we can come in where it’s air-conditioned, we do not have to worry about sweating. The Waxahachie Civic Center is such a blessing to us.”

She said she expected the number of visitors to this year’s Oktoberfest to exceed the 7,000 who attended last year.

Activities included various games, both inside and outside the center, including miniature golf, live and silent auctions, with people vying to win bids on camping equipment, craft items, wine baskets, bicycles and Christmas items.

Other interesting items to being auctioned included a reserved parking spot for mass at St. Joseph Catholic Church; reservations for eight people at the church’s spring musical; an authentic Italian dinner featuring a recipe by the beloved pre-kindergarten teacher, the late Sr. Lucy Sala, who passed away last year; a ride to school in a Waxahachie Police Department unit; a ride on a Waxahachie Fire Department truck in the upcoming Christmas parade; and a ride in a Boze-Mitchell-McKibben limousine.

Dozens of craft, service and food vendors were on hand, as well as a polka band to provide opportunities for dancing.

Proceeds from Oktoberfest go toward the expenses of St. Joseph Catholic School.

Contact Paul at paul.gauntt@wninews.com or 469-517-1450.