Your 2018 Torchlight Parade Marshal – Chuck Thoftne

Thoftne, who said, “I feel humbled to be selected” Torchlight Parade marshal, added, “It was an instant honor when I was asked.”

Thoftne, who has worked with Kwik Trip for 25 years and now is a zone retail operations leader, supervising 110 stores in southeast Wisconsin, also worked for several other local and area stores in the grocery industry.

He was on the La Crosse Area Chamber of Commerce board for six years, including a year as chairman, and now is on the Chamber Foundation Board. He also is an active member of his church, Trinity Lutheran on the North Side, where he has served in many roles.

A member of the Onalaska Sons of the American Legion, Thoftne and his wife, Julie, make Oktoberfest a family affair, with two daughters and two grandchildren joining the festivities.

“Oktoberfest always has been huge, even when we were raising our daughters, with family gatherings,” Thoftne said.

Former Torchlight Parade Marshals

YearTorchlight Parade Marshal
1971Vern Bloss*
1972Margaret Niles*
1973Ray Nibbe*
1974Burton Smith*
1975Roscoe Short*
1976Deak Swanson
1977Bob Allen*
1978Wes Denny
1979Lynden Gjerde*
1980Bob McCann*
1981Dave Skogen
1982Howie Birnbaum*
1983Frank Butkovich*
1984Terry Erickson
1985V.A. Krajewski*
1986Robert Gavin*
1987Gerald Besl*
1988Jack Kraft*
1989Mark Doolittle
1990Dick Morkwed*
1991Elwood Harebo
1992Joe Addis*
1993Mary Patros*
1994Ken Garves*
1995Randy Eddy, Sr.
1996Donna Berry*
1997Dave Berger
1998Dick Merfeld
1999Mike Abraham
2000Bud Loomis & Dave Loomis*
2001Ken Wing
2002Terry LaFleur*
2003Merl Strong
2004Joe Maier
2005Arland Peterson
2006Scott Erickson
2007Steven Hole
2008Paul Stuhr
2009Jerry Thompson
2010Bill Bush
2011Paul Borsheim
2012Jane Molstad
2013Patti Lokken
2014Scott Mihalovic
2015Mark Terpstra*
2016Louie Ferris
2017Tim Colgan
2018Chuck Thoftne
* Fondly Remembered

Parade Marshal Nomination

Know Someone that should “Lead the Way?” Nominate a Parade Marshal today using the Parade Marshal nomination form!

Submit your nomination for a 2019 Parade Marshal by completing the online form below.

Your nominee should be a person who:

  • has contributed positively to the good of the community through leadership and outstanding accomplishments;
  • someone of good character that is well-respected;
  • well-known, well-liked, friendly, outgoing, and has a good personality; and
  • lives within 20 miles of La Crosse.
  • Oktoberfest Parade Marshal Nomination

    La Crosse Festivals Inc. (d/b/a Oktoberfest USA) accepts nominations for Parade Marshals through February for the current calendar year.

    If you know an individual who is deserving, involved, and would be a great fit in our community-focused organization, submit your nomination!

    Your nominee should be a person who:
    • has contributed positively to the good of the community through leadership and outstanding accomplishments
    • is someone of good character that is well-respected
    • is married
    • is a resident for at least 10 years within 20 mile radius of La Crosse
    • is actively involved and well-known in La Crosse community
    • is well-known, well-liked, friendly and outgoing • has the time to devote to Oktoberfest activities!

    All entries must be received no later than 4:00 p.m. on March 28, 2019 to be considered. The final selection is made by Parade Marshal Committee. The new Parade Marshals are announced at the Kick-Off Party in September 2019.

    Eligible nominations shall remain active for three years from the date of the original nomination.