When you hear about the large celebration that happens in Munich every year that is called Oktoberfest, the first word that probably pops in your head is beer. Yes, the Oktoberfest celebration has a lot of beer, but it is so much more than just beer. What started out in the 1800’s as the celebration of a royal wedding has now turned into a world wide tradition. So, whether you are attending the biggest one of them all in Munich or attending the local Nashville Oktoberfest, you should go into it with the mindset of it being more than just a festival celebrating beer.
The major aspect that separates Oktoberfest from other beer festivals is that it celebrates tradition. Even 200 years after the inaugural celebration, traditional attire, music, and dance are at the forefront of every Oktoberfest. It is to celebrate Bavarian culture and the traditions that come along with that. When you attend the Nashville Oktoberfest, you will find plenty of visitors dressed up in their authentic lederhosen and dirndls while carrying around classic Bavarian fare like soft pretzels and schnitzel. All the bands that are found in the tents and on the stages are playing Oompah which is traditional German music. What started as a celebration of a royal wedding quickly became a yearly celebration for the people of Bavaria. They had such a great time in 1810 that the next year they celebrated the exact same way and that is why we still continue to celebrate this fantastic festival every year.
Nashville Oktoberfest may not be 200 years old, but we have celebrated this fantastic tradition for the last 40 years and have made some traditions of our own. For starters, we celebrate this festival every year in historic Germantown which has its own history. Found in 1850 by immigrants, Germantown became Nashville’s first suburb and quickly showed a diverse socioeconomic population. We hold our celebration in this community to pay homage to the immigrants that brought forth their traditions to our great city.
As we gear up for this year’s festival, we want to remind all visitors that this is a celebration of German, specifically Bavarian, traditions and that is one thing that Nashville Oktoberfest prides itself on. We look forward to the 40th annual Oktoberfest here in Nashville and can’t wait to see all of your beautiful faces in the crowd. If you are already counting down like we are, you only have a short 271 days until we are celebrating these fantastic traditions once again!