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This year - NO PROST !

The Oktoberfest is the largest folk festival in the world, and happens in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. It is a beer festival that lasts for 16 to 18 days from the period between mid or late September lasting until the first weekend of October. Millions of people from different parts of the world attend the Oktoberfest annually.

Reality is that 2020 is marked as the year of cancellations. Unfortunately Oktoberfest cannot take place in 2020 due to the spread of Covid-19.

Nevertheless let's learn about this famous folk fest / festival.

Crown Prince Ludwig (who later became King Ludwig I), married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on 12th October 1810. The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates, to celebrate the happy royal event. The newlyweds enjoyed the festivities so much, they suggested making it an annual event.

The fields was then named Theresienwiese ("Theresa's fields"), in honor of the Crown Princess. The locals sometimes call it the "Wies'n".

Horse races in the presence of the Royal Family marked the close of the event that was celebrated as a festival for the whole of Bavaria. The decision to repeat the horse races in the subsequent year gave rise to the tradition of the Oktoberfest.

In 1811, an added feature to the horse racing was the first Agricultural Show, designed to boost Bavarian agriculture. The horse races, which were the oldest and - at one time - the most popular event of the festival are no longer held today. But the Agricultural Show is still held every three years during the Oktoberfest on the southern part of the festival grounds.

In the first few years, there weren't much fun or amusement options. Until 1818, when the first carousel and two swings were set up. Visitors were able to quench their thirst at small beer stands which grew rapidly in number. In 1896, the beer stands were replaced by the first beer tents and halls, which enterprising landlords set up with the backing of breweries.

The rest of the festival site was taken up by a fun-fair. The range of carousels and fun rides started increasing rapidly in the 1870s - as the fairground trade continued to grow and develop in Germany.

Besides plenty of beer, visitors have a chance to enjoy games, amusement rides, and a wide range of traditional Bavarian foods such as the roast chicken and (Hendl) and grilled fish on a stick (Steckerlfish). All of these attractions have made the Oktoberfest the world’s largest Volksfest.

Other cancelled events this year, Tokyo 2020 Olympics (July 24 - August 9), Henley Royal Regatta (July 1 - 5), Eurovision (May 12-16), Glastonbury (June 24-28), London Marathon 2020 (April 26), Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival 2020 (April 10-12/17 -19), The London Book Fair (March 10-12), Google I/O Conference (May 12/14), Istanbul Coffee Festival (September)


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