photo credit: James Almond
Nobody can argue the popularity of holidays with international origins on American soil. Cinco de Mayo, Halloween, Christmas, and let’s not forget everybody’s favorite reason to consume German beer each Fall: Oktoberfest. Despite its name, Oktoberfest is actually a 16-18 day festival held annually in Munich, Bavaria, and Germany from September through the first weekend in October. It has been a significant aspect of Bavarian culture since 1810 and has spread to other regions of the world in recent years.
While Oktoberfest is most commonly associated with beer consumption and promotional glassware, there are many lesser known traditions tied to the holiday, too.
In Munich, the festival kicks off at noon inside the oldest beer tent when the mayor taps the first keg and proclaims, “O’zapft is,” or “it is tapped!” Afterwards, draught pouring throughout the festival can commence. The next morning, a parade of over 7,000 costumed dancers, musicians, animals, and floats passes through the center of Munich.
Traditional Bavarian attire is another important aspect of Oktoberfest. As these outfits are no longer worn by German people on a regular basis, rental shops have popped up around the city. Men wear lederhosen, which are shorts or cropped pants with button or zipper closures, a drop-front flap, and leather suspenders that cross in the front. Coupled with a white shirt, long socks and boots, and a “Trachten hat,” (a German-style hiking hat decorated with a tuft of goat hair), any man can fit right in as he navigates the assorted beer tents. For women, “dirndls” are the appropriate apparel for Oktoberfest festivities. They are made up of a bodice, a blouse, and a full-skirt with apron; but ladies, make sure not to overlook the placement of the dirndl’s bow! When tied on the left, a woman is publicizing her single relationship status, while a bow tied on the right signifies that she is already romantically involved.
While demand isn’t high enough among Pinnacle’s current clientele for us to introduce promotional lederhosen and dirndls into our database of products, we have plenty of other accessories available to enhance your company’s Oktoberfest shenanigans. From custom imprinted German beer steins, located in our Promotional Glassware category, to personalized chocolates and candies, which make for fantastic parting gifts, consider the immense branding opportunities presented by an Oktoberfest celebration. And offering prospective customers, current clients, and employees traditional German fare like Würstl (sausages) and Knödel (potato or bread dumplings) can help your organization form lasting relationships, as well.
“Prost!” (Cheers!) to Oktoberfest!