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Siloam Springs museum holds socially distanced Oktoberfest

by Marc Hayot | October 10, 2021 at 4:00 a.m.

The Siloam Springs Museum will hold a socially distanced Oktoberfest starting Oct. 15.

Known as "Tap Into History," the annual Oktoberfest will be held differently this year, according to the museum's interim director Mary Nolan.

This year the museum will sell coolers for $40 apiece, Nolan said. All coolers need to be purchased at the museum, Nolan said.

The coolers will be available until supplies last and will contain three tokens that can be redeemed at downtown businesses, a keepsake token, a year-long membership to the Siloam Springs Museum, this year's history quiz, and other fun items, Nolan said. Tokens will be valid until Oct. 30, Nolan said.

"Tap into History is a chance for people to get together with family and friends, learn a little bit about history and support downtown businesses and the museum while having a beer," Nolan said.

The history quiz has been done in scavenger hunt style where participants hunt for answers to the questions, said Director of Collections and Research Don Warden. This year, answers for the quiz will be posted on the museum's website and on Facebook, Nolan said.

Those who correctly answer the quiz will be entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card to downtown businesses, Warden said.

For the first year, the quiz was about Simon Sager and his family, Warden said. Answers to the quiz were found in the exhibits of Simon Sager at the museum, Warden said.

Warden made the quiz in 2017 about two liquor stores that operated downtown in the 1930s, he said.

The museum was closed in 2018 for renovations and did not have a quiz, but people had the opportunity to tour Ivory Bill Brewery and Warden spoke about the history of the building which was originally part of the Ralph Jones Company (now Pipelife Jet Stream), he said.

In 2019, the quiz centered on the history of the movie theaters that operated downtown and the pool hall that existed, Warden said. The museum did not have an Oktoberfest in 2020, Warden said.

For this year's quiz, Warden is considering basing it on the Women's Temperance Movement, but is still working on the details, he said.

Participants need to turn in forms by Oct. 30, Nolan said.

Nolan said she got the idea for the socially distanced Oktoberfest from Main Street Siloam Springs Executive Director Stacy Morris who heard about a similar endeavor the town of Skowhegan Maine did, Nolan said.

Skowhegan sold cooler bags in May that contained a selection of 12 brews, which included beer, cider, and seltzer from 12 different Main craft brewers, according to

The bag also contained a stainless steel grilling tool; barbecue sauce and ketchup; an apron; two campfire mugs; cocoa; an ice pack; a Frisbee; a sticker of Skowhegan's new community initiative "Someplace Kind of Wonderful;" and a golden ticket for a chance to win VIP tickets to the next Skowhegan Craft Brew Fest, the states.

Bags sold for $75 and the drawing for the VIP tickets was held Memorial Day Weekend, the site states.

Siloam Springs businesses participating in the socially distanced Oktoberfest are:

• Cafe on Broadway

• Creekside Taproom

• Parkhouse Kitchen and Bar

• 28 Springs

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