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Students embrace German culture at Oktoberfest

The German Zeitgeist Band, a musical act that is a part of a larger performing group known as the American Musician of Musical Artists, played at the University of La Verne’s Oktoberfest on Tuesday. The duo, Richard Bernard on guitar and Karl Nagle on the accordion, has performed at various venues such as Disneyland. The event featured traditional German food during lunchtime in Davenport Dining Hall. CAB also had games with the winners being awarded fun prizes. / photo by Andrew Vasquez

Brianna Means
Staff Writer

The Campus Activities Board brought Oktoberfest to the students at the University of La Verne on Tuesday at Davenport Dining Hall.

The festivities included a live polka band and authentic German food.

Decoration pieces included placemats with fun facts about Germany and the holiday such as how the festival began, how long it runs and the reason behind the colors of the German flag.

Ashley Cole, junior psychology major and the multicultural chair for CAB, decided to bring this German holiday back to La Verne after its success last year.

“Oktoberfest was done last year and since it was so successful and fun, I thought it would be a good idea to bring it back,” Cole said.

Oktoberfest is one of the most popular events in Germany with more than 5 million people in attendance annually.

The festival traditionally begins the third weekend in Sept. and lasts until the first Sunday in October.

The celebration first came about with the royal wedding of King Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on Oct. 12, 1810.

Citizens of Munich were invited to join the festivities, thus setting the stage for Oktoberfest.

“To plan the event, we had to talk with Davenport to plan the food for the event to go with the theme, created placemats and fliers, choose the band and order promotional items for contests,” Cole said.

Everyone who attended the event was given an orange cozy with Oktoberfest written on the front and the CAB logo.

The food featured included bratwurst with an optional sauerkraut topping, potato cakes, potatoes and carrots and roast beef.

“The food was really good,” Spencer Kissick, junior business major said.

“Every time I see that an event will have free food, I will definitely attend,” Kissick said.

The polka band that served as entertainment was found by Anthony Juarez, sophomore public affairs major and concerts chair for CAB.

Juarez and Cole collaborated on the event and the band selection.

“We went through a music website that you can enter a genre and different band names show up so you can contact them,” Juarez said.

“I think that we chose a good band for the event; they are lively and get the crowd in the Oktoberfest mood,” Juarez said.

There were two contests held at the event. The first event consisted of four contestants holding T. Phillips steins filled with water out at arms length until there was only one contestant still holding the mug.

The winner of that event, Robert Escamilla, was happy about the prize, a mug and $15 iTunes gift card.

“I’ve been wanting a mug for a while now and I am happy I came to the event because now I have one,” Escamilla said. “I am also very thankful for the gift card so I can download more music on my iPod.”

The second contest included two contestants having to drink an entire mug of root beer before the other.

Mauricio Medrano was the winner of the root beer chugging contest after having finished his mug in about five seconds.

“I liked the event because it gave us some insight into the culture of Germany and one of the nation’s important holidays,” Connie Cartagena, junior spanish major, said. “I hope they have it again next year.”

Brianna Means can be reached at brianna.means@laverne.edu.

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