German American Cultural Society of Rhode Island Oktoberfest

78 Carter Avenue
Pawtucket, RI 02861

401-726-9873

History of Oktoberfest

The Oktoberfest is the world's largest Volksfest (people's festival). It is held annually in München (Munich) since 1810. Kronprinz Ludwig, later King Ludwig I (reign: 1825–1848), married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on 12 October 1810. The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the royal event. The fields were named Theresienwiese ("Theresa's Meadow") in honour of the Crown Princess, and have kept that name ever since, and the locals have abbreviated the name simply to "Wiesn." In the following years, the festivities grew and the traditional has held ever since.

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