Head to where Munich meets Main
BRECKENRIDGE – We’re not sure why beer drinkers love celebrating Oktoberfest in September, but one of our astute reporters said it’s because you don’t sober up until October. Hmmm …Actually, after some research, we found out Munich’s Oktoberfest starts Sept. 18 and goes through Oct. 3, so maybe our astute reporter wasn’t that far off.All we know is last year, Oktoberfest lovers (15,000 of them) knocked back 14,00 liters of beer at Breckenridge’s Oktoberfest, said Kristen Petitt, spokesperson for the Breckenridge Resort Chamber. (Though that’s nothing compared to the 6.2 million liters of beer consumed at the big boy of beer festivals – the Munich Beer Festival in Germany.) This year, beer and wine booths on Main Street offer brews including Paulaner Bier and the Breckenridge Brewery.But beer’s not the only thing brewing at this weekend’s Oktoberfest. The town will be hopping (literally) with Peter Krainz’s Oompah Band, not to mention the Summit Concert Band, which plays German tunes from 11 a.m. to noon today. Then there’s special guest Joseph Hanek, an 80-year-old member of the polka hall of fame, who will play the accordion – and of course, give autographs – throughout the day. “He’s lived a most fascinating life, and he’s a super, super character,” said Ken Miller, event coordinator.The Jagermarsch, a snake dance, will slitter through the festival, and the famous beer drinking ballad, “Ein Prosit der Gemutlichkeit” (“A Cheer to comfort the body and soul”) will be heard throughout the day.Fourteen food booths offer everything from lobster rolls to traditional German cuisine of brats, sauerkraut, strudels and weiner schnitzels. And, if you just want a burger with your beer, that’s available too.In case you’re worried about growing a beer belly, the Breckenridge Oktoberfest offers the second annual 5-kilometer run or walk. Participants of all ages can register for $20 by showing up at the Breckenridge Nordic Center before 9 a.m. today.Sports-minded visitors also can check out Team Summit’s ski swap at the Riverwalk Center. The swap offers more than 15,000 items, including alpine, cross country and telemark skis, gear, snowboards, clothing, boots and more.A Kinderplaz includes inflatable games and activities for kids.”(Oktoberfest) shows off everything that makes Breckenridge great – from historic Main Street to food, beer and the locals themselves,” Miller said. “This is a first-class event and consummate street party.”A half-liter stein with two beer tickets costs $20, and a liter with three beer tickets costs $25. Beer in plastic cups is $3.50.If you just want the German-imported steins, which Miller said have become collector items, you can purchase a half liter for $15 and a full liter for $20.Oktoberfest runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday on Main Street in Breckenridge (in the 100 and 200 blocks). For more information, visit breckenridgeoktoberfest.com.Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or at email@example.com.
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