Beer, bratwurst, and blaring German music promise to make this year’s Oktoberfest one to remember.
Not to be confused with Wurstfest, taking place in New Braunfels in November, Oktoberfest is a celebration slated for Oct. 3-5 in Fredericksburg for beer lovers who can’t make it to the festival held each year in Munich.
Fredericksburg is only an hour north of San Antonio and has plenty of authentic German heritage of its own. The city’s Oktoberfest will take place in Markplatz (Market Place) in the heart of the town, which was originally settled by German immigrants.
This weekend’s menu promises to satisfy any food lover. Traditional German foods such as bratwurst, Reuben, sauerkraut and pretzels will be available. Traditional American food such as hotdogs, burgers and Cajun food will also be served, along with a uniquely Texan creation — the German taco.
Pairing meals with beer is an Oktoberfest must. The event will feature a mix of over 50 Domestic, Texas and German imported beers on tap.
Many recognizable local beer brands produce Oktoberfest special edition beers such as Leinenkugel Oktoberfest, Samuel Adams Oktoberfest, Shiner Oktoberfest and St. Arnold’s Oktoberfest.
Oktoberfest beer is also called Marzenbier, or March beer, because it was traditionally brewed in March and allowed to slowly ferment during the summer months.
Marzen is characterized by a full body, dark amber color and crisp finish.
Samuel Adams describes its Oktoberfest beer as having a style that “blends hearty malts for a deep, smooth flavor with notes of caramel,” on the website.
Shiner beer’s website similarly describes its Oktoberfest beer as characterized by a, “rich flavor and a dry, moderately hoppy finish.”
Oktoberfest guests will have great entertainment and dancing to accompany their meals. The fifth annual OkTubaFest will take place on Friday from 5:45 to 6:15 p.m. Anyone who can play the tuba or euphonium is welcome to participate.
Saturday morning will kick off with the fifth annual Hauptstrasse Chicken Dance. Anyone interesting in showing off their dancing skills can sign up at 9 a.m., and the dance will begin at 9:30 a.m.
Jakob Lopez grew up in Germany and now attends school at UTSA. He remembers what authentic German Oktoberfest celebrations were like.
“Germany had a lot of festivals. We celebrated Oktoberfest with rides, games, great free food and beer. Everyone from the village would participate and it would last weeks,” he said.
Lopez has lived in San Antonio for five years but will be attending Oktoberfest for the first time this year.
“I’m excited to attend the Oktoberfest in Texas and see a local take on it. We’ll see if their beer can stack up,” he said.
Oktoberfest will start at 6 p.m. on Friday and last until midnight. Saturday’s festivities will last from 10 a.m. to midnight and Sunday’s celebration will continue from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Tickets are $7 for adults, $1 for children ages 7-12 and children under six will be admitted for free.
Can’t make it to Fredericksburg this weekend?
This weekend and next, Beethoven Maennerchor in Southtown will, of course, provide plenty of brews and music for Oktoberfest.
The San Antonio Museum of Art will host its second Friday Art Party with an Oktoberfest theme next week 6-8 p.m. on Oct 10. While the monthly event usually features a craft cocktail, this time Texas brews from GS1221 will be served while D.T. Buffkin performs. A smaller, more intimate Oktoberfest – far fewer tubas and chicken dances involved.
*Featured/top image: Fredericksburg’s 2013 Oktoberfest. Courtesy photo from www.oktoberfestinfbg.com.