Lederhosen? Check. Dirndls? Check. Brats? Check.
Buckets o’ beer? Check, check and double check.
Steins will be raised en masse at the end of the month for the annual fall Bavarian blowout that brings Oktoberfest to the Modesto and Mother Lode regions.
One of the most well-known celebrations in the world, as well as one of the largest, the 2-week-long German Oktoberfest has been held annually in Munich most years since 1810.
The celebration draws plenty of crowds in the greater Modesto region, as well. The Modesto Chamber of Commerce event has been going on for more than three decades and returns this year on Friday, Sept. 30.
Held at John Thurman Field, the Modesto festival will feature music and a midway along with plenty of brats, sauerkraut, German potato salad and, of course, beers all around. Plenty of microbrews will be available for sampling, as will California wines and some nonalcoholic drinks.
“It’s always been a big hit,” Modesto chamber CEO Cecil Russell said of the festival. “Some people come (for) the beers, some people come for the food, some people for the bands.”
This will the 33rd year for the Modesto Oktoberfest, which always attracts a sizable crowd. “We get almost 2,000, people and (grill) about 3,000 brats,” Russell said.
Those brats will be grilled by the Modesto Police Officers Association this year, he added, and Thurman ball field will be reconfigured to make the main event – beer sampling – easier.
On the entertainment side, music in the Oktoberfest air will be by cover band Gotcha Covered, which has played at the event in the past. The midway will have some new features this year, Russell said.
The Oktoberfest is a bit of a different event for the chamber in that it’s not family-oriented – it’s a 21-and-over affair, he said. But entering its 33rd year, it’s one of its most popular.
“It’s really a nice event,” Russell added.
Meanwhile, in Twain Harte, the annual Pints in the Pines offers a Mother Lode nod to Oktoberfest, also presented by that community’s Chamber of Commerce.
Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 1-2, will bring the 11th annual Oktoberfest, a.k.a. Pints in the Pines, which features craft and food vendors and live music from Black Irish Band on Saturday and Sherry and the Psychedelics on Sunday.
There will be a beer and wine booth on site at Eproson Park, as well as a beer garden where special beer and food tastings will be offered at the two-day festival.
Pat Clark: 209-578-2312
Modesto Oktoberfest 2016
When: 5:30 to 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30
Where: John Thurman Field, 601 Neece Drive, Modesto
Pints in the Pines (a.k.a. Oktoberfest)
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2
Where: Eproson Park, 22901 Meadow Drive, Twain Harte
Tickets: Free; $25 for beer garden