Tomorrow is not only the start of Fall and cooler days, but also the start of the world's largest and oldest beer festival: the Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany. This year's festival runs for 16 days from September 21st through October 6th.
Almost everyone has heard of the Oktoberfest, and many have visited it at least once. Below are a few interesting tidbits that you may not know:
- The first Oktoberfest was held on October 12, 1810 in Munich to celebrate the royal wedding of Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen.
- Over the past 209 years, the Octoberfest has been cancelled only 24 times, mainly for reasons like cholera outbreaks or war.
- About 6.3 million people attended the Oktoberfest in 2018; the most-attended festival was in 1985, when 7.1 million people showed up.
- Almost 2 million gallons of beer are consumed during the 16-day festival.
- And it's not only beer that's consumed. Over 10,000 whole roast chickens, 124 cows, 48 calves, 59,000 pork knuckles and over 60,000 sausages are eaten.
- At the fest there are 38 different beer tents, with the 14 largest tents holding between 5,000 and 14,000 people.
- Don't try to steal your stein. Over 100,000 beer mugs were confiscated from patrons trying to sneak them out in 2018. If you want a souvenir, they're for sale.
- Beer prices keep steadily rising. This year the average cost of a liter (about 1 quart) of beer is almost $13 (about 11.50 Euro).
- Even though it seems like the whole fest is overrun with tourists from around the world, about 70% of attendees are actually from Bavaria, Germany.
- The festival makes the city of Munich $1.43 billion in tourism money.
For more information about the Oktoberfest, click here.