"I just kind of put two and two together with Martin Luther King Day, Gasthof's, hanging banners, full-on SS uniforms, and then they have even the National Socialist swastika t-shirts and little pendants with the same logo that's on the t-shirt," says a scared guest who requested anonymity.
After the media hysteria break out, Mario Pierzchalski, the owner of Gasthof's confirmed to City Pages that the event took place on January 20.
"We live in a free country...but from the comments I see, a lot of people they don't see what freedom is. If I break the law, punish me. But we did this for so many years and everything was fine," he told the Star Tribune.
After posting the initial photo, City Pages received two anonymous emails from readers with more information about the NS-themed party. One came from a friend of the bartender who took the photos and has since been fired from Gasthof's.
"My guy said there were no other Allied forces," he says. "It was only Nazis. Only SS uniforms."
The source provided several additional photos from the night in question. One of them depicts a t-shirt featuring an eagle perched atop a swastika. Describing it, he said "the back of the shirt has dates like a tour shirt. It has the cities the Nazis invaded and the date."
Stay Connected with Us
City Pages also spoke with a former Gasthof's employee who left the restaurant two years ago and says he worked a number of events held by the group depicted in the photos.
He told us that during an event, one of the group members asked him if he was German. When he told the group member he was Polish, he was asked if he had any family in the war.
"I said, 'Yes, my grandfather was in a Nazi concentration camp.' And they said 'Oh, well, water under the bridge then,'" the source says.
The group in the photos visited Gasthof's at least once each month and was given a private room in the back of the restaurant, according to another former employee who worked at Gasthof's for eight years before being terminated in December for unrelated reasons.
The former employee chose to opt out of attending the events, but heard about them from co-workers, he says. Only longtime servers and staff members were told the details.
"They would always ask people if they were German," the source says of the guests. "One of my wife's friends who was actually a server at the time, I think she was asked because she was German, they said, 'Oh we can make the perfect babies together because you're German and I'm German.'"
The source says that the group's presence was a cause of concern for some employees.
"A lot of the servers were intimidated by it because of the effect that some of those symbols and images had," he says.
The bartender who took the photos has declined to speak about the incident, the friend says, because he is "concerned about his own safety. He doesn't know what kind of stuff these guys are capable of."