Oktoberfest kicks off fall events

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Kicking off Canyon Lake’s fall events is Oktoberfest. Hosted by the Canyon Lake Chamber of Commerce, the 8th annual Oktoberfest will bring the flavor of Germany to the Canyon Lake Towne Center tomorrow, Sept. 29, from 4 to 9 p.m. Admission is free.

The original Oktoberfest, held annually for approximately two weeks in Munich, Germany, is the world’s largest Volkfests (beer festival and traveling fair). Fortunately, Canyon Lakers don’t have to travel that far to celebrate this annual German tradition.

Canyon Lake’s Oktoberfest is a family-friendly event featuring live music, traditional food, beer and wine garden, dancing, contests, kids zone with bounce house, carnival games, more than 30 vendors and a special appearance by Thunder of Storm Stadium.

The American Bavarian Brass Band is returning again this year to provide music throughout the evening.

A selection of beers, both German and American, will be available for purchase. Beer tickets are $5. An ID and wristband are required for alcohol purchases. Outside alcohol and coolers are not permitted. Oktoberfest commemorative mugs will be available for purchase for $5 per mug.

Oktoberfest wouldn’t be complete without contests. Contestants ages 21 and older can compete for a chance to win prizes in beer drinking (non-alcoholic), stein holding, hot dog eating and jalapeno eating contests.

Folks of all ages are invited to wear Bavarian costumes (lederhosens and dirndls), participate in the chicken dance and march in the Parade of Flags that displays American flags and flags representing the armed forces.

This year’s sponsors include the Sports Stop, Canyon Mattresses & More, Platinum Plumbing, Bershire Hathaway, JDI Dance, Lakefront Family Dentistry and SCE, Blue Water Realty, Lake Elsinore Casino, CR&R, ABC Bounce and Canyon Lake Car Club.

Following Oktoberfest, the chamber will be hosting its 26th annual Parade of Frights on Saturday, Oct. 27, at 9 a.m. Parade of Frights brings costumed children to the Towne Center to trick-or-treat at more than 50 businesses. This historic event draws hundreds of children each year and features carnival games, costume contests, bounce house, music and a special appearance by Thunder of Storm Stadium. The chamber is seeking sponsors for this event.

For more information, contact Alison Burrafato at 951-244-6124.

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Donna Ritchie