"A Celebration of Summer!"
July 16-20, 2013
Come home to Alpenfest in Gaylord, home of the World's Largest Coffee Break and where our beautiful Alpine Village Main Street magically transforms into the Alpenstrasse. Artist's from all over the country display their crafts, and area vendors offer up tasty ethnic treats. The carnival lights up the night sky and fills the air with the sounds of laughter.
If you need a place to stay check out the variety of Gaylord Lodging opportunities!
Gaylord Alpenfest Video
Michigan Travel Show - Great Lakes Sport Publication.
Gaylord Alpenfest History - Alpenfest Early Years on the Alpenstrasse
In the early 1960’s Gaylord, which is the county seat of Otsego County, was in the process of changing the town’s image to that of the Alpine look. This change was hastened by the decision of U.S. Plywood to build a particle board plant in Gaylord. The process used to manufacture particle board was developed and patented by a Swiss businessman, Fred Fahrni. The new plant meant employment for many in the area and also opened the door for a big market in the county for aspen and pine, from which the “Novaply” was processed. The plant was scheduled to open in 1965, and to help celebrate the opening, as well as show off the new look of Gaylord’s Main Street; a committee was formed in 1964 to plan a gala event. The committee was composed of General Chairman, Robert Fritz of Radio Station WATC; Finance Chairman, Harold Elgas, the President & CEO of Gaylord State Bank; Publicity Chairman, Robert Benidict, Publisher of the Herald Times; Nyman Tripp, the District Manager of General Telephone; Edward Calkins, Owner of Ken-Mar; Eileen Catt and Marie Sharp, Queens Committee; Nellie Schlang, costumes; Donald Smith, decorating; Gary Waldo, music; Bill Wishart, of Glen’s Market, in charge of concessions and Clark Bates, with the fire department, in charge of fireworks. The committee named the event THE ALPINE FESTIVAL, and it was later changed to the Alpenfest, as it is now known.
Submitted by Robert Fritz