Oktoberfest originates in 19th century Munich, but the world’s biggest fair has a boisterous presence in Vancouver. Deutsch-happy Canadians will slam frothing mugs together with a resounding “Prost” at the Alpen Club’s DAS Oktoberfest events October 1, 7, and 8, which include live music, dancing, bier, plus an unconventional and lively showdown known as the Bavarian Olympics.
Founded in 1935, the Alpen Club began as a way to connect Vancouver’s expanding immigrant community from the Alpine regions of Germany and Austria. Club members pooled their resources and in 1950 they built the historic house with resto, at Victoria Drive and 33rd, as a gathering hall for cultural activities. Today Metro Vancouver has over 200,000 residents of German descent, as well as a steady stream of newcomers like infamous pastry chef Thomas Haas, who was born in Bavaria.
The festivities at the Alpen Club run from 7:00 pm- 1:00 am on each date listed above and the $30 ticket includes entertainment, an Oktoberfest keepsake and a traditional German beverage–the draft Warsteiner is hard to beat.
The two pronged approach with eats/drinks and music plus Bavarian Olympics celebrates traditions of yore while simultaneously poking good-natured fun at them. The classic club menu with brats, kraut, porky roasts and schnitzel will be available throughout the evening. Meanwhile the bands—Al Pichler The Alpiners on Oct. 1 and The Continentals on Oct. 7 and 8— will provide all the brassy oom-pa-pa’s necessary for a seriously große fest.
But don’t stuff yourself silly; do limber up with voice exercises and stretches. The bands will host the Bavarian Olympics, which are a series of competitions in yodeling, chanting and dancing. They’ll also crown one Bavarian Princess as Miss Oktoberfest each evening, provided she’s donned a dirndl.