Columbia Valley & East Kootenay
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Oktoberfest in Kimberley, the city of Festivals
Oct 7, 2017
Oktoberfest in Kimberley BC, the City of Festivals, is celebrated the first Saturday in October each year. The festival is combined with the wind-up event of the First Saturdays series. Visitors can enjoy the First Saturdays’ live music, theatre, high tea, art market, demonstrations, and more, right alongside the Oktoberfest activities. It’s one of the best days of the year to be in Kimberley!
The Oktoberfest festivities start with mascot Happy Hans playing his kazoo while leading a parade of children into the Platzl. The alpenhorn sounds, the Burgermeister officially opens the festival and the dancing begins. The dancers are accompanied by live accordion music and beautiful Bavarian costumes add a colorful touch.
There is usually a pretzel toss, strudel-eating contest, a suds race, kids’ activities including a root beer garden, story time and more, plus free workshops, barmaid races, great food and, of course, several outdoor beer gardens.
Crowds flock to ‘Rocktoberfest’ in the evening for the huge outdoor concert which features spectacular local musicians. The concert is a great family affair and later, ‘Rocktoberfest Extended’ allows for the more sophisticated tastes of the 19+ crowd
Come in Bavarian dress and you could win a prize!
For more details about Oktoberfest in Kimberley, click here.
Did You Know?
Oktoberfest is the world’s largest Volksfest (beer festival and traveling funfair), according to Wikipedia. More than 6 million visitors from the four corners of the globe come to Munich, Germany for 16 days of revelry.
The festival’s romantic history is a tale worth telling. In 1810, Germany’s Crown Prince Ludwig who later became Germany’s King Ludwig I, married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on October 12th. All the citizens of the city were invited to celebrate the occasion with festivities in the fields in front of the city gates.
The anniversary of the royal couple was celebrated each year afterward and the size and scope of the party grew over the years. At some point, the merry-makers were able to quench their thirst at small beer stands and in 1896, the stands were replaced with the first beer tents and halls, primarily to increase beer sales for the local breweries.
The festival is more than 180 years old and just keeps getting more and more popular each year. Today, Oktoberfest is celebrated in countries round the world – and even in our own Columbia Valley backyard!
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