So Good to Be Together Again!
So good! So good! So good! Not that we haven’t already been spending time with our closest friends during the pandemic (our pod), but a glamping road trip together has been a long time coming! Our last trip was Belknap Hot Springs as Covid reared it’s ugly head. The Mt. Angel Oktoberfest is a four-day folk festival first held in 1966 in the town of Mt. Angel, Oregon. Organized by the town’s predominately German and Swiss inhabitants, the Oktoberfest celebrates the Alpine and Bavarian heritage through traditional attire, food, music and arts and crafts. The first Mt. Angel Oktoberfest drew approximately 39,000 visitors and now boasts attendance up to 375,000 guests!
Sausages, Pretzels and Beer-Oh My!
The timing of our trip to Oktoberfest couldn’t have been better. In preparation for some new testing related to Celiac disease, I was informed by my doctor that I needed to eat gluten prior to the test or the results would not be accurate. Don’t mind if I do! This meant ALL the delicious foods were on the table. Literally. Over the course of the event, we tried just about everything; meat pies, sausages, corn dogs, beef stew and pelmini (my favorite). Don’t forget the strudels, fritters, funnel cakes and other sweets and many, many beers and wines.
The first order of business was dressing up. Aaron and Kim came prepared with lederhosen and dirndl’s. I love any excuse to dress up, so I was very excited to head to the Touch of Bavaria store to acquire our own authentic attire. I happily donned my uncharacteristically colorful new dirndl and immediately felt immersed in the experience. Norman picked an uncharacteristically black lederhosen and I thought it suited him handsomely.
Monks Brew it Better
There is usually a shuttle up the hill to the Benedictine Abbey, but this year there wasn’t. Since I was ordered by my doctor to drink the beer, I did not want to miss out on a chance to sample some Benedictine brew. So we walked. Well, hiked is more like it, uphill, all the way. And absolutely worth it. I sampled the Black Habit (of course), a delicious dark ale, while Norman enjoyed the St. Michael Helles. These were absolutely the best beers I have had in a very long time. The atmosphere is great and there are snack foods available.
Once we had enjoyed our fill of tasty brews, we went on to explore the museum and church on the grounds. We then decided it was time for a well-deserved (and necessary) nap before the evening festivities.
Polka, Sweet Caroline and who the *** is Alice?
It is good that we took a nap before going out for the evening, those Bavarians really know how to party! With at least six music venues, more than 20 bands and entertainers, 51 food vendors, over 80 crafters, the Oktoberfest Olympics, dances, car show and cruise and a golf tournament, we had to work real hard to get through what we did in the four days!
I had not danced so much in a long time! We made a conga line that wound throughout the entire venue as we danced to “Day-O!” by Harry Belafonte, which was a common song performed by most of the entertainers. A polka version of “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond, and “Who the Heck is Alice?”, which is actually called “Living Next Door to Alice” by New World, were also among the favorites.
New Friends, New Traditions
We had such a great time eating, drinking, singing and dancing while we made new friends and enjoyed the company of old friends. I hope this event becomes another tradition for us, I am already warming up for the 2022 Oktoberfest Olympics!