Oktoberfest offers entertainment, games, camaraderie
Capt. Markus Haake, E. Co., 1st Bn., 212th Avn. Regt., with his wife, Christine, and children, Isabella and Jonas, search for the perfect pumpkin at last year's festival.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. (September 19, 2013) -- Fall is right around the corner, which means it is time to don some lederhosen or a dirndl and head out to the festival fields to help celebrate Family, food and cultural diversity.

The annual German festival Oktoberfest will be held Sept. 27 from 4:30-9:30 p.m. on Fort Rucker for those who cannot make it to Munich to celebrate.

"It's a great time for the whole Family," said Kristi Fink, Directorate of Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation special events coordinator. "There is so much for the kids to do at the festival, and adults can have fun, too."

There will be many different activities for children, including: inflatables, face painting, a pumpkin patch and games such as the sack race.

"Adults can enjoy the German food and drinks while they are checking out the vintage Volkswagens behind the big tent or playing some of the (adult) games," said Fink.

This year a few new aspects of German living have been added to the agenda.

"We are adding the Volkswagen Show and Shine, which (is a) vintage Volkswagen (car show) ranging from 1950 to the 1970s," said Fink. "All the VWs have been restored and are (owned by) local owners, and some have multiple trophies from car shows in the southeast U.S."

Sonnenschein Express, "who loves to get the crowd involved," returns this year to put on another live show to get the party moving and make the event feel as authentic as possible.

"The United States is made up of so many different cultures, and I believe celebrating those differences makes us more united and gives us a new perspective into other traditions around the world," said Fink.

The night will also feature pony rides, crafts, games, a zip line, a mechanical bull, a spider mountain bungee, a remote control race car track and more.

A variety of food and merchandise vendors will also be available for patrons -- to include traditional German food such as bratwurst and schnitzel, and German beverages.

Though officials want everyone to have as fun of a night as possible, safety always comes first and advise patrons to drink responsibly.

"Please make sure to have a designated driver if you plan to drink, or call a taxi," said Fink. "We will have taxi numbers at the command post, which will be located by the entertainment tent. If you need to leave your vehicle overnight, your vehicle will not be towed."

This will be the second year that a traditional keg tapping will be a part of the festivities. The tapping will be under the main tent at 4:30 p.m., and Col. Stuart J. McRae, Fort Rucker garrison commander, will be doing the honors.

Admission to the event is free, but there will be automated teller machines on site for food, merchandise and entertainment.

Page last updated Thu September 19th, 2013 at 13:15