That debaucherous time of year is upon us again...Oktoberfest! For those of you going over to the hallowed turf of the Theresienwiese (or Wiesn to the locals) this weekend for the 102nd stein-centric festival of all things beer (and sausage, sauerkraut, pork knuckle, pretzels, lederhosen and dirndl) - we salute you!
Oktoberfest is also a major strike against those who say Germans don't have a sense of humour - for it starts in September
Originally a wedding anniversary of the wedding between the Crown Prince Ludwig (who became King Ludwig I later) and Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on 12th October 1812, Oktoberfest was simply a party where Munich's citizens were invited to a field on the city's outskirts that they renamed Theresienwiese (Theresia's meadow) in the newlyweds honour.
The festivities ended with a horse race and everyone enjoyed it so much that they decided to repeat the race the following year. On this anniversary, an agricultural show, beers stalls, merry-go-rounds and other amusements were added. Although Oktoberfest has a reputation of being a huge beer drinking gathering, there are attractions and events for the entire family.
The horse race is no longer held, but Oktoberfest is still celebrated on the Theresienwiese in Munich. So welcome to the 'Wiesn' as the locals say!
Munich isn't on its own however as other places in Germany also have their own unique beer festival celebrations as well - Cannstatter Wasen in Stuttgart, Freimarkt in Bremen & the Rheinkirmes in Düsseldorf for example.
Theresienwiese is 31 hectares big with 14 beer tents where about 7.2 million visitors annually visit swigging on approximately 6.9 million LITRES of beer!
The festival begins with the procession of landlords, breweries and showmen to the Theresienwiese at 11am on Saturday where a parade is accompanied by brass bands and lead by the Münchner Kindl (the young monk that is the symbol of Munich) and the Lord Mayor of Munich.
Once the mayor (best place to be a mayor ever?!?) has tapped the first barrel of beer in the Schottenhamel tent and shouts out "O'zapft is", Oktoberfest is opened!
Starting this Saturday and finishing on Sunday 5th October, the 14 tents are open from 10am to 11:30pm on weekdays and from 9am to 11:30pm on weekends, while the last beer is served at 10:30pm.
2013 Lost Property 4500 items in total 1000 articles of clothing 300 pairs or eyeglasses 400 keys 480 mobile phones 80 cameras 2 wedding rings 2 French horns Hearing aid Table Tennis bat 1 dog...it was reclaimed!
Looking for a Lederhosen of Dirndl? Check out the shops selling them on Tal street, off Marienplatz #EToT
But what if beer isn't your thing? Do you prefer a glass of red, perhaps after running 26 miles....?? Keep an eye out on the next blog and we may have just the thing...
If you have ever wanted to explore Germany more, why don't you learn the language in Berlin? One of the coolest capital cities in Europe! Read more about this experience here.