Post Eagle Newspaper


Feb 22, 2024

45°F, few clouds
New Jersey

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Oktoberfest At Fontana Slovene Hall

On the weekend of October 25th, the Slovene Club in Fontana staged an Oktoberfest with a Slovenian band, the Alpen Vagabund performing. The band had just spent 3 weeks performing in Leavenworth, Washington, where 4 bands perform in 4 different halls simultaneously over each weekend. They had one more week of work and then they head home to Slovenia for a respite and then head back on the road for more international performances.

IMG_0002forwebWe attended the event on Saturday evening. The Wood and Rote families have done a spectacular job of sprucing up the hall. When we arrived the smell of sausages wafted from the barbeque, beckoning us. The band, enjoying the California sunshine outside, finished up their meal and played a few tunes as we all chatted. The music moved inside to the hall and the band did a stellar job.

In photo on right: Vagabundi relaxing.

They surprised many of us, who expected Slovenian music because the band was listed as the Oberkreiner-Ansambel Vagabundi, but we were rewarded with an excellent Alpine German repertoire. They played mostly German music with a dash of American rock and roll and wrapped up the evening with a few Slovenian tunes. The audience kept the dance floor well occupied for the night, filling it when they played the hot rock and roll numbers. Though the band could have played through the night, we old folks left shortly after 10 when the band was scheduled to stop.

IMG_0008forwebDuring one of the rock and roll numbers, a group of young and old formed a circle where an old guy and young gal were tearing it up. As the song wound down, the old guy dove to the floor and performed the worm, much to the amazement of everyone, especially his young partner who thought he was having a heart attack and suffering convulsions. Actually my heart is just fine.

In photo on right: Frankie Butsch with Bella


In photo on left: Donnie Blazic jamming in the bar
In photo bottom left: Sore Fee
In photo bottom right: Hot dancers