Sunday, October 16, 2011


I've never had the pleasure of experiencing Oktoberfest in Munich, but one day.  Until that day arrives, I have to rely on Oktoberfest celebrations by my fellow German-Americans.  They range from beer specials at a bar to a bier garten set up under a tent.  Well, this weekend, Columbia hit the motherlode.  I mean, major.  Surely everyone has seen the signs and ads around town about Oktoberfest at Incarnation Lutheran Church.  I admit, when I saw that it was being held at the church, I assumed it would be an Oktoberfest-themed party sans bier.  I was wrong.  Delightfully wrong!

My best friend attends Incarnation and enlightened me to their plans.  
Eugenie & her beautiful daughter (my god-daughter)

This church invested in major kitchen renovations and additions to prepare for this festival.  Church members were there Thursday night pounding out cutlets for schnitzel.  Tents were pitched, a dance floor laid down, T-shirts made and the bier wagon came rolling in.  

This festival was OUTSTANDING, people.  I was blown away.  Incredibly impressive.  

There were German bands, Hefeweizen, Beck's, riesling, brats, schnitzel, spaetzle, frankfurters (yeah, with the crunchy casing), pretzels, sauerbraten.  
Accordions, clarinets, tubas!

I know a good bier when I see it

The food was all cooked by church members, no restaurants assisted.  I ordered the Jaeger schnitzel plate which consisted of the schnitzel, of course, sweet & sour green beans and potatoes with bacon.  This rivaled any German fare I've had in a restaurant.  And, I was amazed by how smooth an operation they were running.  They were able to accept debit cards at the food tent, plates were put together and served quickly, they had two large tents set up with tables.  These were on either side of the stage and dance floor so you could eat and still enjoy the entertainment.  

Sorry this doesn't look so good; it was getting dark
My little one probably had the most fun she's ever had at a public festival.  First, she bee-lined to the bounce house.  Next, she joined kids on the church playground and was content there for a good hour and a half.  We got her to sit down briefly to eat.  She was kinda weirded out by the casing on the hot dog, so I peeled it off and she ate every last bit of it.  Then, she announced, "I want to go on the dance floor!"  She got out there and started dancing to that oompa music as if she'd been doing it her whole life. I joined her for a few dances, but she really preferred working solo.  At one point, the singer asked for a "Chicken Dance Leader."  The Vivver ran right up to the stage and was chosen to wear a stuffed chicken hat and lead the chicken dance.  I was a proud mama indeed!  Unfortunately, this all occurred after dark, so the iPhone wasn't able to capture any usable photos.  

Hats off to the people of Incarnation Lutheran.  Their Oktoberfest was one of the best festivals I've been to in a long time and I'm delighted to know that they plan to make it an annual event.  Very, very impressive get-together.  If you missed it, make sure you get there next time.  

Auf Wiedersehen!

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