2016 Lovettsville Oktoberfest


Written by Hope Davison and Dominique Cruz

Wiener dog races, soft pretzels, and German crafts are just a few things you can find at Lovettsville’s annual Oktoberfest. Lovettsville’s 23rd annual Oktoberfest, celebrating the community’s German heritage, featured local musicians, vendors, traditional German food, and Kinderfest for the kids.

Traditionally, the German inspired fall festival is held in Munich, Germany, for about sixteen to eighteen days. The first Oktoberfest was a celebration of King Ludwig I’s marriage to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on October 12th 1810, in Germany. German immigrants began arriving in Lovettsville to farm and eventually making villages. Originally called The German Settlement, the town was later renamed in honor of David Lovett in 1828.

In the main tent on East Pennsylvania avenue, people could socialize and have a bite to eat, while enjoying German performers. Free Alpine dancing instruction was held in the tent and crowd’s involvement was highly encouraged. “The best part of Oktoberfest is the audience participation, when we get the audience out on the dance floor,” said a German performer.

Many local businesses set up booths that lined the streets of Lovettsville. The library had a used book sale, and Andy’s Pizza and subs hosted a Beer Garden outside of their restaurant. Woodgrove’s very own We Are All Human Committee had their own station with a built-in photo booth. People could take a picture with a chalkboard that said “I am…”, participants filled in the blank with a personal characteristic that they liked about themselves.

The children weren’t left out. Most kids made their way to Kinderfest, which is a part of the town devoted to the younger crowd, with moon bounces and face painting. This year’s Kinderfest had a rock climbing wall that was suitable for all ages, and a miniature pony rides that brought smiles to children’s faces.

“For the community it allows young and old to actively participate in something together, you have little kids getting their faces painted and you have older people watching German dancers or making German crafts,” said Effie Hall, a German teacher at Woodgrove High School.

Lovettsville’s Oktoberfest gathers people from near and far. Melani Carty, from the Lovettsville Museum and Historical society said, “My favorite part of the Oktoberfest is that I can sit here and see so many people I know, even though I didn’t grow up here.” Carty highlighted the fact that Lovettsville is much closer of a community than her home town in Southern California.

“My favorite part is family and friends, and then you have the vendors, the smell of it, and pretzels and bratwurst,” said Silvia Eberly, representing Magic Mountain Entertainment. Eberly is originally from Austria and now lives in Arlington, Virginia.

The festival brings the whole community together by supporting local businesses and organizations. It’s diversity allows for everyone to find something they love.  Don’t worry if you missed out this year, Oktoberfest’s spirit won’t disappear.