Looking Back at Top Crummer Oktoberfest Moments in a Pandemic Year

Fundraising drive replaces annual in-person celebration due to COVID-19 precautions.

Crummer’s Oktoberfest—a favorite annual event for many in the Crummer community—has long been an important scholarship fundraiser in addition to one of the liveliest social events on the Crummer calendar. Last year, we were excited to report a record-setting year, with over $22,000 raised for student scholarships.

While Crummer will not be able to hold the traditional in-person event this year, alumni and friends of Crummer will still be able to tap into the spirit of the event to help the School attract and retain the best students.

The 2020 Oktoberfest will instead take the form of a 5-day scholarship fund drive that will take place during the last week of October. During that week, we will be sharing the stories of Crummer alumni whose lives and careers have been positively impacted by the value of a Crummer degree.

We will return to our traditional family-style dinner fundraiser when it’s safe to do so; until then, we hope that you will show your Crummer spirit by contributing  to the Crummer Scholarship Fund of your choice!

In honor of one of our favorite events, we look back at some of the best memories from previous Oktoberfest, as we eagerly anticipate gathering together in-person again in 2021.  Until then: Oans, zwoa, drei, g’suffa!

The Hollerbach’s Gift

Theo and Linda Hollerbach `00MBA largely built their dream, Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café in Sanford, FL, off of Linda’s Crummer education. Citing that the Crummer MBA was the impetus for finding the confidence to start their own restaurant business, the Hollerbachs have built a small empire in the downtown Sanford district, growing the original 75-seat lunch café into a thriving German-themed enterprise with a 300+-seat restaurant, a German store and delicatessen, an apparel shop featuring authentic traditional folkwear, and an ever-growing series of holiday celebrations and outdoor festivals. As a way to say thank you to Crummer for empowering them to achieve their dream, the Hollerbachs partnered with the Crummer School to host an annual scholarship fundraiser event at their restaurant. To this day, hundreds of thousands of dollars have been raised for Crummer scholarships through this amazing partnership.

The 10th Anniversary Oktoberfest

The legacy of the Crummer Oktoberfest Scholarship fundraiser was cemented at the 10th annual event in 2015. With the enthusiasm of the event higher than ever, the Crummer Oktoberfest Scholarship Fundraiser became a “mark your calendars” type of event every year that was always set to sell out. At this time, crowd favorites such as Crummy Money, music (and antics) hosted by the Jimmy & Eckhard show, the yodeling contest, and the beer stein holding contest had all been annualized as favorite traditions that the Crummer Community enjoys.

The Legend of the Late Steve Gauthier, and Other Enthusiastic Servers

We can confidently say the continued success of the Crummer Oktoberfest Scholarship Fundraiser is largely due to the enthusiasm our celebrity servers bring. A lot of the enthusiasm was derived from the late Steve Gauthier, former assistant dean at Crummer, who passed away this summer. Year in and year out, Steve raised the bar on the costumes, sometimes changing out of costumes multiple times throughout the night, bringing smiles and joy to the faces of those in the Crummer community. Steve’s willingness to have fun with the event, paved the way for many other servers to ditch the tie for the night in exchange for a fun costume.


A Record-Setting Year in 2019

The 2019 Crummer Oktoberfest Scholarship Fundraiser set a new record for the amount of money raised in one event for student scholarships: over $22,000! This was the culmination of the continued excitement and generosity from the Crummer Community for the annual event. While we wish we could hold the annual event in 2020 and top that number, we hope to continue raising the much-needed scholarship funds for future Crummer students to enjoy the benefits of a Crummer degree.