Tickets now on sale for 2003 Schmeckfest

Tickets now on sale for 2003 Schmeckfest Orders are now being taken for tickets for the 45th annual Schmeckfest to be held in Freeman April 3, 4 and 5, 2003.

All tickets for the popular ethnic German meal served at the three-day festival are sold by mail order, advance sale only. A full three-course meal featuring the traditional foods of the Freeman community is served family style to 1,000 guests each night.

Tickets are also now on sale for reserved seats for the 2003 Schmeckfest musical production, Oliver!, the Lionel Bart musical based on the Charles Dickens' classic, Oliver Twist. The community theater production will be performed at Pioneer Hall each evening of Schmeckfest at 8 p.m. The musical will also be presented Sunday afternoon, April 6 in a 2 p.m. matinee.

The festival also includes free demonstrations, displays, programs and exhibits celebrating the Germans-from-Russia Mennonite tradition of the Freeman community.

Tickets for the meal and reserved seats for the musical are mail order, advance sale only.

All orders received prior to Dec. 1 will be filled by a random drawing. Those received after Dec. 1 are processed daily with first-choice preference given when available. All orders for tickets should include a check and a self-addressed, stamped envelope. For tickets or more information, write Schmeckfest, Box S, Freeman, SD 57029 or go to www.Schmeckfest.com.

Celebrating its 45th anniversary year, Schmeckfest � a "tasting festival" � was started in 1959 as a one-time event by the Freeman Academy and Junior College Women's Auxiliary to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the organization. It proved to be so popular that it was repeated the following year ? and the year after and quickly became an annual affair. It expanded to two days and then to the three-day event which has become known nationally for its celebration of tradition and culture. Held annually in late March or early April each year, this three-day festival brings hundreds of guests to the community from near and far.

Proceeds from Schmeckfest go to benefit Freeman Academy, a Christian, co-educational middle and high school affiliated with Mennonite churches in the area established in 1900.

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