Oktoberfest is a festival that is held every year in Münich, Bayern, Germany. It is seen as the biggest festival in the world with more than seven million visitors every year.

It is held in the beginning of October and lasts for 16 days. The first time for the Oktoberfest was in 1810. It is the first Sunday of October that decides the dates for the festival. The festival is held at the Theresienweise, a place in Munich. The name of the place is from the princess Therese of Sachsen-Hildburghausen that were consort to the crown prince Ludwig. Their wedding was held at Theresienweise that in the year 1810 was just a meadow. This event is seen as the first Oktoberfest. Once in history the Oktoberfest has been extended with a day, that was in 2010 at the 200d anniversary.

Special beer and special clothes

Before the festival, a special beer is brewed. It is served in cans containing a litre. The beer is tasteful, fresh and of a colour of amber. It has to be brewed at breweries in Munich to be served at the festival. The beer is served in large tents that can take up to 10 000 people. It takes nearly two months to build up the area before the festival. Many visitors are dressed in the traditional German clothes called Dirndl and Lederhosen. Dirndl are clothes from the southern parts of Germany containing a blouse and a skirt but in some cases a dress. It can be made in different materials but mostly in cotton or silk. The dress is closed with hatches and strings to enhance the chest of the woman wearing it. Lederhosen are short pants made in leader, mostly by pig or deer. These are worn with suspenders and a white shirt. Lederhosen comes in two types, one with short legs and one with pants ending at the knees.

Few but large tents

In Munich, there are six breweries that are brewing for the Oktoberfest. It is the breweries that manage the 14 large and 15 smaller tents. The giant among breweries, Leuwenbrau, has the biggest of the tents in the festival area. There is about 100 000 seats in the tents and when there is extremely crowded in the area the tents are all shut down for security reasons. In total there is between seven and nine million litres of beer served during the 16 days of the festival.

Lots of resources

The Oktoberfest is highly associated with beer, but it was actually not before 1880 that the authorities allowed serving beer at the festival. Only a few years later the large beer tents were the main attraction at the festival. Because of different wars and outbreak of cholera the festival was shut down for 16 years. The years after World War II the festival was held in a much smaller range. After 1950 the festival has been held every year. In 1980 there was a bomb at the entrance of the festival that took the life of 13 people and 200 people were injured, of which 68 was seriously injured. During the festival there is a special hospital set in the area to take care of injured or intoxicated persons. There is also a special police station set, one German and one Italian since many visitors come from Italy. Also, there is a fire station in the area. Munich broadens the local buses to meet the need of the visitors since the town during this time has several hundred thousand visitors during the time of the festival.

The Oktoberfest
The Oktoberfest