Oktoberfest celebrates German culture - Rucker style
September 8, 2011
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (September 8, 2011) -- Fort Rucker residents get to experience German culture and heritage without having to leave post at the Fort Rucker Directorate of Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation ninth annual Oktoberfest Sept. 23, 4:30 p.m. at the post's Festival Fields.
DFMWR hosts Oktoberfest as a way to not only recognize German heritage, but also to give those who have been stationed in Germany a chance to be nostalgic, explained Kimberly Abeln, DFMWR annual events coordinator.
"Many of our Soldiers and their Families have been stationed in Germany and this is a great way to strengthen the partnership our countries share. It also allows those who have not been to Germany to experience some of their great musical and culinary contributions to the world," she said.
This year's Oktoberfest will have many familiar highlights from previous years, including live music, multiple vendors and German-inspired events and competitions.
The entertainment for the evening will be Sonnenschein Express, a German musical group from Orlando, Fla. The group will be return to Fort Rucker for the fourth time. Previous Oktoberfest guests have been entertained by the groups traditional Alpine folk act that includes traditional instruments and crowd participation.
"The audience also loves the cow bells and yodeling the band members are so good at. Sonnenschein Express is known to get people out of their chairs and onto the dance floor," said Abeln.
Vendors will offer German food as well as American fair-favorites such as fried Oreos and frozen sweet tea, as well as arts and crafts items. There will also be many events offered for children and adults. Some of these events include barrel rolling, pumpkin painting, pony rides and a giant boxing ring. Abeln added that there are two exciting new events this year.
"The Barrel Rolling challenge is where contestants roll an empty keg as fast as they can in and out of cones and back to the start line. If you skip a cone or knock a cone over, you have to start at the beginning. Don't Spill Your Mug is where each contestant has filled mugs in each hand and they race through cones trying to spill as little as possible," said Abeln.