Who needs to go to Oktoberfest in Munich, when you have Kitchener-Waterloo (Ontario) to go to? The Oktoberfest hosted in the university/college town, an hour and a half North West of Toronto is the world’s second largest celebration of the German festival. Originating in Munich, the citizens of the city celebrated their King Ludwig’s marriage to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen.
Tickets had to be bought a month ahead because they were so quickly sold out, each year. Along with the celebrations, we bought a ticket to a grand feast. We chose to go to the Koolhaus gathering located at the Bingeman’s grounds. During regular hours, Bingeman’s grounds had a small fountain and pond with a mini-putt area as well. We chose the latest slot for the feast at 8:30pm and we quickly jumped into line for the buffet dinner. Starting with a small salad area, we moved onto the entrees. Including schnitzel, rib pucks, potatoes (German style), cabbage rolls, and sausages and so much more, we engorged ourselves in food. Did I forget to mention the bar where you can buy a pitcher of beer. Sadly, the only beer they had was Canadian or Coors. I thought at Oktoberfest, they’d have German beers! (Complaint number one). When you were overstuffed and was still managing to walk, you walk over to the dessert table for an awesome pumpkin cheesecake or apple bake. Because we were the last time slot, we were the last ones to leave the dinner. We missed most of the performance, though it was an eclectic mash up of songs and something about a rubber chicken? It was slightly distasteful and awkward, I felt. (complaint number two) Maybe I just wasn’t drunk enough.
You’re so full from food, you barely could think of any more beer. However, we rolled ourselves to the second tent where the actual celebration was. Security was tight. I was very impressed by that. There wasn’t a line but it seemed like they were expecting a lot more people. Walking in, the tent was huge and there was a stage in the middle of the back of the tent where a man who was dressed like Elvis was playing with his band. The tent had a few decorations here and there but all-in-all just felt quite ‘meh’. (Complaint number three). We walked straight to the bar and I was super impressed by the quick service that we got, albeit the pouty woman behind the bar didn’t seem that nice (complaint number four). We managed to steal a table and spent the rest of the night dancing and drinking. I was completely sober all the night (complaint number five) only because the whole thing was so expensive and I didn’t want to buy so many drinks. But to be fair, I can drink quite a bit before I feel anything.
The music was good and was very polka-ish. I liked the fact that they had a screen and posted up people’s hashtag pictures from Twitter. People were fun and friendly, and someone ended up teaching us how to line dance. Which was totally not surprising.
Just one last complaint (complaint number six), my girlfriends came back from the washroom telling me that they had overflowing porta-potties and only one washroom actually worked. I held on to not go to the washroom until I got home.
In the end, I still had tons of fun with my friends. Most of the complaints are sort of typical of festivals. However, I was surprised to see how little people there were and that the drinks were so expensive. I mean, extremely expensive for a Canadian or Coors beer. I’d likely not go again next year…Maybe.
Happy WAAAAAAAAAAAY BELATED Oktoberfest! Prosit!