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Oktoberfest in Aiken canceled by ADDA because of concern about 'risk'

Oktoberfest 1

Philip Williamson enjoys pretzels and a beer at Oktoberfest on Newberry Street in downtown Aiken in 2018.

For the second year in a row, Aiken’s version of Oktoberfest has been canceled.

The event was scheduled for Sept. 25 at the Newberry Street Festival Center.

The Aiken Downtown Development Association, or ADDA, is Oktoberfest’s organizer.

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“We went back and forth on what the right decision was as an organization,” according to recent posts on the Facebook pages for ADDA and Aiken Oktoberfest. “We finally landed on protecting our volunteers and the people that support downtown. Although we know people would have shown up and we would have had a successful event, we could not ignore the risk.”

An ADDA spokesperson declined to comment further Monday.

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There have been increased concerns recently about the novel coronavirus. The Aiken Standard reported earlier this month that two students and a staff member in Aiken County’s public schools had died and also had tested positive for COVID-19.

Last year, the Aiken Standard reported that Oktoberfest had been called off about a month prior to event, which had been scheduled for Oct. 3.

COVID-19 was the reason given.

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