Oktoberfest a barrel of fun.jpg

Oktoberfest a barrel of fun


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THE SECOND annual Lisbon Oktoberfest, which celebrates Bavarian culture, music and cuisine, attracted over 1,500 visitors over three days last week.

Organised by the German-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce Jovens Empresários, Young Business Leaders, and the Goethe Institute, this year’s event featured music from a Bavarian brass band from Rosenheim kitted out in traditional lederhosen and feathered caps playing country folk tunes, polkas, and the traditional Munich Beer Drinkers’ Anthem as well as dancing Schuhplatteln, the shoe slapping dances.

The three-day charity event kicked off on Thursday afternoon with the traditional opening of the beer barrel by Lisbon Câmara executive finance officer, José Vitorino de Sousa Cardoso da Silva (Finanças e Património), who stood in for the President of the Câmara, António Costa, who, at the last minute, because of pressing business, was unable to attend.

Hosted by Canal Lisboa television presenter Renato Brito with Martin Stadter, the President of the Jovens Empresários e Gestores at the German-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce, the event also counted on the participation of the Chamber of Commerce’s President Patrick Schwartz and Goethe Institute Director Ronald Gratz.


The Oktoberfest is an annual beer festival event originating from Munich, the capital of Bavaria, but its origins owed little to beer but more to horse racing and the Bavarian royal family that sponsored it.

Before the unification of Germany in 1871, Bavaria was an independent German kingdom and, in 1810, hosted the first so-called Oktoberfest, which runs for two weeks in the second half of September and the opening days of October, to celebrate the wedding of the Crown Prince Ludwig, later Ludwig I, to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen.

Today, it is one of the biggest festivals in the world attracting around six million people from around the world.

At the event in Lisbon, in the gardens of the Goethe Institute on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, visitors from the German community, many dressed in traditional lederhosen and colourful embroidered dirndls (dresses), invited guests and members of the German-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce joined Portuguese students of German to make this year’s festival a truly memorable one.

Various types of German sausages were served up with sauerkraut and potato salad, along with apple and vanilla tarts with cream, and of course, all washed down with litres of German Marzen beer.

On the Sunday, children added a gemutlichkeit, warm and cosy family atmosphere to the afternoon, playing tombola, bang the nail, as well as enjoying face painting and games, antics and tricks from two clowns.

All the proceeds from the charity event, which currently stands at more than 1,500 euros from one or two sponsors alone, will go to help children with special needs at the Aldeia de Crianças at Rio Maior, north of Lisbon.

Sponsors included Lidl, Merck, Lufthansa, Weidmueller and Deutsche Bank among others.

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