The Federation of German-American Societies fosters outreach to its members and to the local community through social events and a shared interest in German culture, language and history.
What We Do
The Federation of German-American Societies, INC. supports the German community in the greater Rochester region. The Federation holds an annual fundraising event in August that is the longest running cultural festival in the area. This year marked the 117th time the event was held. The two day festival showcases German food (with homemade German potato salad and sauerkraut made by our members), German music, traditional German dancing featuring our SVH and BVA clubs, and German culture with a large history/culture display on site.
The Federation previously held a Gala Ball each year in January to highlight outstanding members and their contributions to the Federation. However, in 2022 it was decided to move this celebration to October and rename it the Heritage Celebration and Awards Dinner. Awards are presented to the citizen of the year for outstanding support and contribution to the Federation and clubs. Citations are also given to recognize the hard work of select members.
Additionally, the Federation hosts a traditional Christkindlmarkt in November of each year where patrons can shop various crafts and gifts and enjoy some heartwarming German food (lentil soup, potato pancakes and yummy desserts).
In February we don our costumes and bring out our silliest selves to celebrate Karneval/Fasching (Mardi Gras to the French, fat Tuesday to the US). We let loose with some skits, some beer and a costume contest parade. A prince and princess are coronated each Fasching and put forth decrees for their loyal subjects. Traditionally, this was an adult only event, but has become more family friendly over recent years.
Our clubs hold annual events for their members as well. The Rochester Touristen Verein holds a German Festival each year at their scenic camp in Lima, and they have a Weinfest in September. The Schuhplattler Verein Heidengold and Bayern Verein Alpengün have a spring dance each year to showcase their talents. The Germania Singers holds concerts throughout the year and, recently, has been working with our dance clubs on joint performances. The Rochester Schwaben Verein has a steak roast each year. Many of our clubs hold traditional holiday parties in December as well.
Be sure to check our events calendar for all our public events and activities. If you're interested in learning more, or joining one of our many clubs, be sure to check out our Member Clubs page for contact information.