It’s that time of year again to put on your Ledershosen, take out your Bierstein and brush up on your German! (Lesson #1: “Erst mach’ dein’ Sach dann trink’ und lach!” = “First take care of business, then drink and laugh!”) Oktoberfest is just around the corner! You do not need to head to Munich, however, to enjoy all that this deliciously boisterous time of year has to offer, especially if you happen to be in Indianapolis between September 8th-11th. The Indianapolis German-American Klub is hosting its 37th Oktoberfest this year in German Park and it looks like it’s going to be quite entertaining.
Oktoberfest first began 201 years ago in Munich, today the capital of Germany’s largest state known as Bavaria, to honor the marriage between Prince Ludwig and Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. (German Lesson #2: “O’ zapft is!” = Bavarian German for “It’s tapped!” (…the keg that is), is proclaimed by the Mayor of Munich at the official start to each year’s festival). Since then, German immigrants have spread the tradition far and wide and now Oktoberfests can be found in cities across the globe.
Indianapolis has a special connection with German culture, considering that the Germans were the largest ethnic group responsible for the building of the city. To get a feel for the prevalent remaining influence of these early immigrants, combine your Oktoberfest experience with a trip to the Heidelberg Haus, a cafe and gift shop with absolutely delicious Laugenbretzel (Lesson #3: “Ich hätte gern eine Laugenbretzel bitte!”= “I would like a pretzel please!”) You could also head over to The Rathskeller‘s lively Biergarten for some live music or enjoy an authentic German meal at The Edelweiβ Restaurant. Whatever you do, don’t let this time of year pass by without enjoying some some real German Gemütlichkeit – in this case in Indianapolis!