It's the most wonderful time of the year. Believe it when we say that we are counting down the days to Halloween, feeling pretty giddy with excitement as we inch in on the big day. Let's not take leave of our senses, however, as there is a wonderful fall celebration in the works that should not be overlooked--Oktoberfest! Oktoberfest, a traditional German festival, has all the makings of fun for the entire family. Here's everything you need to know about Oktoberfest and why you should be celebrating.
Believe it or not, Oktoberfest began as a wedding celebration that took place back in October of 1810. When the Bavarian Crown Prince married Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen, the happy couple invited all the locals to celebrate the nuptials with them. Oktoberfest was born. Apparently, the event was so successful and so much fun that the festivities became an annual tradition. We simply can't argue with great logic!
Oktoberfest, which takes place September 19-October 3, is essentially a huge German-themed bash filled with delectable German foods, music, dancing and more. Did you think that Oktoberfest was only celebrated in Germany? The truth is, although the traditional German festival began in Munich, Bavaria back in the year 1810, Oktoberfest events are now marked throughout the world, particularly in the United States. You certainly don't have to be German to appreciate great food, beer, merriment, beer, music, beer, dancing, oh, and beer. Did we mention that there was beer?
Speaking of beer, it's an Oktoberfest tradition to partake only of German beer during the celebration of Oktoberfest. In Munich, it's actually a strict requirement that only beer from German breweries will be served. These German breweries include Paulaner, Spaten, Hacker-Pschorr, Augustine, Hofbrau, and Lowenbrau. You could say that the Germans take their beer very, very seriously!
Since man cannot live on beer alone, Oktoberfest is traditionally a time a great feasting on authentic German foods, including sausages and meat, sauerkraut, cabbage, pretzels and Lebkuchen hearts. A Lebkuchen heart is a classic heart-shaped gingerbread cookie that is often decorated with a loving message, and if not eaten, it is sometimes tied around the neck with a decorative ribbon.
Why wait for Halloween to get dressed up in a fabulous costume? Oktoberfest is the perfect to get decked out in an impressive German styled costume. Men, it's time to don your Lederhosen, and women, a Dirndl (a Bavarian-style dress with a tightly laced bodice) and go out and party, German-style.
Oktoberfest is sixteen days of fun. From carnival-style games and rides to singing and dancing, you simply can't find a better way to welcome fall as well wind down the month of September and welcome everyone's favorite month of the year, October! Oktoberfest, indeed!