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Oktoberfests Galore

While beer lovers celebrate the world's largest party in Munich at the moment, DW-WORLD compiled a list of other Oktoberfests around the world. Several readers pointed out that the list is far from complete.

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Putting smiles on beer lovers' faces around the world

Your list of worldwide Oktoberfests is quite interesting but is missing one crucial celebration. The biggest annual celebration of Oktoberfest in North America is held in Canada! Since 1969, the two cities of Kitchener and Waterloo Ontario have celebrated the largest Bavarian festival in North America. This area has been home to German immigrants for over 100 years. Before the First World War, Kitchener was known as Berlin, Ontario and even had a statue of the Kaiser in the main city park. The war changed the name of the town (named after the leading British World War I commander, Lord Kitchener) but the German heritage remained strong. Even today the area has a large number of German cultural clubs which operate year round and help with Oktoberfest. Kitchener-Waterloo's Oktoberfest is a nine-day celebration. It includes 40 family and cultural events (including the crowning of Miss Oktoberfest!) as well as 17 beer tents. The highpoint is the largest Thanksgiving Day parade in Canada. Thousands of people come from all over Canada and the USA to celebrate in Oktoberfest. This year's festival will be held from Oct. 8 to 16, 2004. DW should send a reporter! Unfortunately, I will miss all the Gemütlichkeit because I now live and teach in the US. Prosit! -- Matthew Hendley

There is an Oktoberfest starting about the middle of September every year in Odessa, Washington. This town was founded by Germans that first went to Russia, but didn't like it. They then immigrated to Washington state (hence the name Odessa) and became farmers in the area. This is a large celebration every year with lots of beer, dancing and lots of good food. This fest has been going for many years. Most of the German farmers in this area are large wheat farmers, and even though it has been several generations since they arrived, you can still hear German being spoken throughout the year. -- Cecil Means

You forgot Cincinnati's Oktoberfest, which takes place this weekend. I'd argue that it's the second or at least third biggest Oktoberfest outside of Munich! -- David Schweitzer

Over 500,000 people attend the Oktoberfest "Zinzinnati" -- one of the largest in the world! Hoffbrau has a bier garden nearby and they feature the chicken dance. -- Mike Kalthoff

Here in Scappoose, Oregon we have a "sauerkraut fest" that passes for an Oktoberfest and there will be a full-scale Oktoberfest at the Columbia county fairgrounds near Portland in a week. There are Oktoberfests in Mt. Angel, Oregon, home of a famous German monastery, and the Wolf Creek Inn in southern Oregon where Jack London stayed has another at their historic hotel. There are doubtless many others. We like beer here. -- Geoff Cooper

There is an Oktoberfest put on by the Chamber of Commerce in Helen, Georgia (USA) which is billed as the largest Oktoberfeat in the southeastern US. It runs from mid-September to the first weekend in November each year. -- Jakob Herzog






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