Novemberfest is a time-honored tradition held each year by Nativity Catholic Church and is the third largest annual carnival in Hillsborough County, following the Florida State Fair and the Strawberry Festival. The annual event is reported to attract more than 100,000 people each year and is run by parish volunteers.

Unfortunately, due to the continued concerns surrounding COVID-19 and large gatherings, Nativity has decided to postpone this year’s festivities.

This would have been Novemberfest’s 51st year of family fun and entertainment as well as Nativity’s largest fundraiser supporting its school and faith formation program.

“For the past two months, Nativity Parish’s Novemberfest Committee has been meeting to discuss the viability of our 2020 event,” said Father John Tapp, pastor at Nativity Catholic. “After considering several possibilities/iterations for Novemberfest 2020 and taking into consideration the restrictions which COVID imposes on gatherings like this, we decided to cancel this year’s event. In the meantime, I pray that you and your families are safe and healthy. I am grateful for all you do for our parish community. May God, in his goodness, bring a swift and complete end to this pandemic.”

The committee is already planning for an even bigger and better Novemberfest for 2021.

According to Maureen Ringley, principal at Nativity Catholic School, “Novemberfest has a far-reaching impact on the Greater Brandon community in that it brings generations of diverse folks together yearly for a weekend of safe family entertainment with a bonus of great food and fun.”

R.J. Brauneker, Novemberfest chairman, knows that this year has been challenging and the cancellation of such important fundraising and community events like this is difficult. But, the church, school and committee are committed to making sure everyone will have a fantastic and safe event to look forward to in 2021.

“Novemberfest is a time when our Brandon community comes together to celebrate great food, fellowship and endless family fun. I can’t wait for Novemberfest 2021, which will be here before we know it, and our Novemberfest Committee looks forward to making it the best event yet.”

Novemberfest will take place next year from Thursday, November 18 to Sunday, November 21, 2021. Nativity Catholic is located at 705 E. Brandon Blvd. in Brandon. For more information about Novemberfest, visit

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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.