Start of 800-word article
MUNICH FOR OKTOBERFEST AND MORE
Surely it is the most celebrated wedding of all time. Way back when - in
October 1810 to be precise - Bavaria's Crown Prince Ludwig married Princess
Theresa, and joyous festivities continued for sixteen days on the outskirts of
Munich. Everyone had such a grand time, the celebrations were repeated the
following year, and the next, and almost every year since. Now, the site is
called Theresienwiese (Theresa's meadow) and the occasion Oktoberfest.
In case you haven't heard of the magnitude of this affair, let me quote
statistics for last year's bash. An estimated 7 million attended. They consumed
200,000 pairs of pork sausages, hundreds of thousands of chickens, and at least
five dozen oxen broiled whole on outdoor spits. And they drank five million
litres of beer. For the event, temporary beer-gardens are set up by Munich
breweries in massive tents. Beer is ceremoniously brought in aboard decorated
horse-drawn drays. There are colourful parades, fairground rides, live bands -
and lots of rollicking good fun.