By Leslie Huff
Downtown Youngstown has prepared a stage for enjoyable inexpensive activities all month long to enhance the attraction of autumn affairs in the city.
Oktoberfest kicked off the fall season with weekend long celebrations hosted by Rhine Haus Bier Hall on Phelps Street.
The German-inspired restaurant and brewery provided Youngstown community patrons with a collection of German traditions and games.
German cuisine, live music, dance breaks, German vendors and the popular ax throwing cage filled Phelps Street with endless entertainment and fun for everyone.
For $5, patrons were able to complete up to 10 rounds of ax throws toward a bull’s-eye.
Rhine Haus grants this opportunity to customers during its hours of operation as well.
Mikel Lewis, manager of Rhine Haus and Youngstown native, said the ax throwing enclosure has become a favorite of locals and tourists.
“Everyone loves [ax throwing]; it’s something fun and different for the downtown scene,” Lewis said.
With the emergence of the indoor sport, downtown Youngstown can compensate for the lack of outdoor recreation during pockets of chilly weather throughout the month.
Mark Worsencroft, regional director of Rhine Haus, said the restaurant is preparing to host a Halloween party for Youngstown State University students 18 and older.
“We are working towards planning a YSU night for Halloween,” Worsencroft said.
If community members missed the weekend festivities of Oktoberfest, Mill Creek MetroParks provides Youngstown residents and non-residents a chance to indulge in an abundance of activities.
On Oct. 6 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Fellows Riverside Gardens has organized a kayak trip to explore the wetlands of the East Newport Boat Launch in Mill Creek Park. For individuals 18 and older, registration must be completed by Oct. 4.
In true October fashion, Fellows Riverside Gardens is also hosting a pumpkin carving celebration and a pumpkin walk.
Andrew Pratt, Fellows Riverside Gardens director, said the “Pumpkin Walk at Twilight” has become one of the biggest events in its decadelong run.
“In years passed, it has actually attracted over 10,000 people,” Pratt said.
The pumpkin carving is Oct. 10-12 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Carving tools will be provided, but attendees are allowed and encouraged to bring personal carving utensils.
Following the concluding day of pumpkin carving, the “Pumpkin Walk at Twilight” will commence Oct. 13 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Participants will experience the exciting staple of the fall season by taking a stroll along the paths of the gardens as day turns into night.
Accompanied with the special event, garden guests can also enjoy live entertainment and advantageous activities.
On Oct. 19 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., people can partake in a Halloween bash at one of Mill Creek’s famous destinations, Lanterman’s Mill. With a ticket cost ranging from $3 to $5, participants can revel in music, dancing, games, snacks and costume competitions.
On Oct. 25 at 6 p.m., students can venture two blocks from central downtown to the Soap Gallery for a witch’s brew.
Attendees can anticipate a night of entertainment, hors d’oeuvres, musical selections and readings from the works of William Shakespeare.
Tickets can be purchased in advance at The Soap Gallery, by calling the Opera Western Reserve office at 330-480-0693 or for $30 or $35 at the door on the day of the event.
Rhine Haus is open Thursdays and Fridays from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 10 p.m. Extended hours are available for students who are 21 and older.
For more information on events, visit millcreekmetroparks.org and youngstownlive.com.