NEW ULM - The last day of 2014 Bavarian Blast began with the annual parade starting from the Fest Grounds.
Sunday's weather remained rain-free despite rising humidity. Brown County Commissioner and former Heritagefest board member Dick Seeboth said that in terms of weather this year was the best Bavarian Blast in the last four years.
Following the parade, the festival hosted New Ulm Sings 2014. The singing contest was for amateurs ages 15 to 25. It is part of the larger contest called Minnesota Sings.
Staff photo by Clay Schuldt
Schell’s Brewery keeps tradition alive with the horse-drawn, classic Schell’s beer wagon that gave parade-goers a glimpse of New Ulm’s past during the Sunday parade for Bavarian Blast.
Hermann the German, played by Bryce Boelter, joined the parade to remind the crowds of Hermann Fest, which will be held Saturday, Sept. 6, in New Ulm.
Rayn Nachreiner, winner of New Ulm Sings, performs while accompanied by Ian Kimmel on guitar.
The winner of New Ulm Sings, Rayn Nachreiner, was the only contestant, but the 16-year-old high school junior gave a strong performance singing a cover of Maroon 5's "Sunday Morning."
As the winner of New Ulm Sings, Nachreiner will advance to the statewide Minnesota Sings to compete for a $2,500 grand prize.
Nachreiner was accompanied on stage by Ian Kimmel, who played guitar. When Kimmel was later encouraged by the crowd to perform, he played a version of Norman Blake's "Church Street Blues."
Show Judge Alex Meixner closed the show with a group sing-a-long with several audience members. In honor of the Oscar Mayer Wiener-mobile's inclusion in the festivities, the audience sang the Oscar Mayer Wiener Song.
This year's Bavarian Fest proved to be a success. The Thursday night concerts had double the attendance from 2013. Friday and Saturday attendance was also slightly higher from last year. Those attending Bavarian Blast, not only turned out in large numbers, but they stayed longer. The main event tent had full or nearly full capacity throughout the weekend.