Octoberfest festival season

Festival visitors enjoy singing and cheering to music at a past October festival in Wittlich. Photo by Iris Reiff

Festival visitors enjoy singing and cheering to music at a past October festival in Wittlich. Photo by Iris Reiff

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- The communities of Binsfeld and Spangdahlem both hosted an Oktober festival over the weekend. Hundreds of people came to enjoy the fun and listen to Bavarian style brass band music.

The largest October festival still to come and closest to the base is possibly the Wittlich October festival, which kicks off this Friday, Sept. 23, 7 p.m., when the city mayor, Joachim Rodenkirch, tapps the first keg of beer in the presence of festival visitors. Many of them will be dressed up in original Dirndl and Lederhosen outfits, cheering and singing from the tent benches.

Starting Friday, people can then get a taste of Bavaria and enjoy renowned music and show bands, as well as taste original food specialties at Wittlich’s annual October festival. All activities will take place inside a large, decorated tent, located on Industriestrasse.

Activities will come to an end Oct. 31 with a final, musical performance by the locally popular “Aischzeit” party band.

For more information on this year’s festival schedule, to reserve a group table or to obtain information on food choices, people may visit www.oktoberfest-wittlich.de.

Police controls are enforced throughout the Wittlich October festival to prevent people from consuming alcohol and driving. Arranging transportation is highly recommended following the parties.

While people celebrate an Oktober festival in the Eifel, the Munich October festival, known to be one of the largest, most popular festivals in the world continues.

The Lord Mayor of Munich tapped the first keg of beer Sept. 17 for the opening ceremonies with a festive parade marching through town afterwards. The event is presently in full swing and runs for a total of 16 days, always ending on the first Sunday in October.

The huge "Volksfest" is held on the Theresienwiese grounds in Munich, where visitors can enjoy more than 200 attractions, rides and sideshows, besides other entertainment featured everywhere on the grounds. Overall, six million visitors make their way to the largest folk festival in the world every year. At the Munich October festival people can find over a dozen large beer tents with a total seating capacity for 100,000 guests.

Most popular food specialties at the festival are possibly beer, pork knuckles, bretzels and white sausage.

The Munich festival will take its course until Oct. 3.

At this time it is probably difficult to find a hotel room in the city of Munich, according to organizers, but people can possibly find lodging in the outskirts of the city for a spontaneous visit.