By Jim Hughes, Fort Rucker Public AffairsSeptember 17, 2019
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Fort Rucker will once again offer up a taste of Germany with its annual Oktoberfest Sept. 27 from 4:30-9:30 p.m.
Just don't head to the festival fields this year, as Oktoberfest will feature new tastes and a new look at its new location in and around The Landing, according to Tim Carter Fort Rucker Directorate of Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation community activities coordinator.
While many sights, tastes, sounds, family activities and entertainment will be familiar to those who've attended past Oktoberfest's at the post, the new location does feature some changes, including an expanded menu of German food in buffet style in The Landing, decorating the ballroom similar to a German festhalle, and moving the band, Sonnenschein Express, into the building on the stage in the ballroom, Carter said.
But the aim remains the same -- a good time for all.
"If you want to have a good time and have good food with good friends, come out," he said. "It's family oriented, so we'll have stuff for the kids to do and stuff for the adults to do. We'll have great food and a band you won't hear except for once a year."
While Sonnenschein Express will be putting on a show full of festival favorites, including the "Chicken Dance," inside The Landing, there will also be A DJ out front playing different types of German music, the activities coordinator said.
Also outside will be bouncy houses for children, which are free; carnival-style games and rides, such as the zip line and a climbing wall; vendors with a variety of goods, including non-German food; a biergarten; and adult games, such as cornhole, a mug holding contest, keg toss and a volksmarch (for details, see sidebar), he added.
"Moving the band and some of the food indoors gives us some coverage in case of bad weather, which is a big plus for us as storms affected last year's event," Carter said. "If we have bad weather this year, we'll just bring everything we can inside and continue on."
For the buffet, people get their food in the Legends Room, and then eat in the ballroom amidst the festhalle atmosphere, he said. The menu includes beer bratwurst, sauerbraten, jager schnitzel, stuffed cabbage, German potato salad, German coleslaw, braised red cabbage, cucumber salad and spaetzle. In the biergarten outside, a food truck will sell bratwurst with rolls, schnitzel sandwiches and turkey legs.
"We want to make sure everybody gets a little of everything and enjoys themselves," Carter added. "It's going to be a good-looking event and I hope everyone enjoys it."
Since the vendors and rides will occupy the parking lot across from The Landing, parking will be available at The Landing Zone parking area, the lower lot adjacent to where the rides and vendors will be, spaces around the headquarters building and also across Howze Field at the U.S. Army Combat Readiness Center.
For more information, visit www.rucker.armymwr.com.