1. Taste of Newton
It is the event of the year, the one everyone seems to come downtown for — Taste of Newton. There will be between 50 and 60 food booths at the 30th annual event. Main Street will be closed to traffic between the 500 and 700 blocks, and there will be two stages offering free entertainment.
The annual event features a wide variety of food from local restaurants and church and civic groups, plus live entertainment, including Bethel jazz groups, the Newton Community Children’s Choir, Sound of the Heartland and other local musicians and dancers.
2. Fall Festival
Fall Festival at Bethel College is chock-full of sports, arts and crafts, music, good food and a lot of visiting.
Most events take place Oct. 14 on campus, and most are free and open to the public.
Fall Festival Fair Day, food and craft booths as well as exhibits by student, alumni and local organizations open beginning at 9 a.m. on and around the Green.
The Bethel College Women’s Association’s “Market in the Round” inside Luyken Fine Arts Center offers baked goods, crafts and special Bethel College items for sale. Outside will be places to buy New Year’s cookies, homemade pie by the slice, beef borscht and zwiebach, with all proceeds benefiting Bethel.
On the outdoor Prairie Sky Stage (Memorial Hall if rain) are student readings and a sneak preview of the Bethel literary magazine YAWP! fall issue, 9-9:20 a.m.; Bethel a cappella ensembles Open Road (men), 9:30-9:50 a.m., and Woven (women), 10-10:20 a.m.; Newton Community Children’s Choir, 10:30-10:50 a.m.; the 8th annual Jazzfest, featuring local high school groups from Newton and Hesston, Bethel jazz ensembles and jazz faculty, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; and Bethel College Academy of Performing Arts (BCAPA) students, 2-3 p.m.
The biennial Low German program takes place at 10 a.m. in Krehbiel Auditorium. A freewill offering will be taken to support Bethel College.
Bethel’s steel drum band, directed by Brad Shores, will play on Centennial Plaza at 11 a.m.
Participatory music includes Kindermusik at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. (for children age 2-5 with an adult caregiver) in the Friesen-Neufeld Discovery Room in the Memorial Hall basement, and a hymn sing with the Bethel College Alumni Choir at 2 p.m. in the sanctuary of Bethel College Mennonite Church.
3. Catch a concert
FNJ Quintet will give a family-friendly performance at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 14 at Jay's Place, 220 N. Main, downtown Newton. FNJ Quintet features Anthony Jasso, saxophone; Brian Hinkle, guitar; Frank Rowell, trumpet; Eli Brockway, bass; and Bruce Major, drums. There is no cover charge.
4. Learn online safety techniques
This month's Tech Time with Nathan will feature "Keep Your Online Persona Safe." The presentation begins at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 12 at Newton Public Library. Admission is free. For more information, call 316-283-2890.
5. Catch the musical
Bethel’s "Godspell" will take place Oct. 13, 14 and 15 in Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center on campus. The Friday show is at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 3:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased at Thresher Shop in Schultz Student Center during regular business hours, Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-5 p.m., or at the door a minimum of one hour before showtime (subject to availability). Ticket prices vary, and Bethel students get in free for the Sunday performance.
This is not the first time "Godspell" has been performed at Bethel.
It was staged in 1992, making this the 25-year anniversary of its first appearance at the college – or, as John McCabe-Juhnke says, “the silver-anniversary celebration of Godspell on our campus.”
A unique aspect of the published script for "Godspell" is that it suggests that the characters, aside from Jesus and John the Baptist/Judas, all be named after the actor in the role. That tradition will be continued in Bethel’s production.