Saturday, Sept. 15 was a date marked on the calendars of many in the surrounding areas of Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA. Most importantly, it meant the prominent presence of German beer, bands and bratwurst (topped with sauerkraut, with a side of warm German potato salad and a brioche bun of course). Traditionally, it’s suggested you nurse one of the four authentic and homemade beers on tap in a complimentary plastic beer stein you receive upon check in. Alternatively, larger glass beer steins were available for purchase that you could use in conjunction with a Western beverage of your choosing.
This year’s celebration was held in the small event center of the Barnyard Shopping Village, so while there wasn’t a lot of space to meander, there was plenty of seating that made it easy to sip beer and watch patrons enjoy the live traditional music. As the day stretched into the evening, there was a trove of events and contests to enjoy. From stein holding contests for both men and women, to pageants for Miss and Miss Jr. Oktoberfest, the participants were constantly interacting with one another, making for a fun and inclusive place to embrace the culture that Germany has to offer. However, if you were not 21 or over, you were limited to pretzels and bratwurst. If bratwurst didn’t strike your fancy, they also offered cajun hot links and bockwurst (Swiss sausage).