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Strike up the polka band and dust off your drindle– recent revelry at the Mt. Angel Oktoberfest filled my multi-cultural-loving heart to capacity as the girls and I posed as Rhinelanders for an afternoon…

I’d love nothing more than to hop on a jet-plane and travel the world whenever the mood strikes, but in the meantime I’ll settle for brief immersion experiences like this joyous German festival. It’s an annual event every September (don’t let the name fool ya!)  in a quaint rural town. The girls had never been– and it’d been nearly a decade for me, so we were eager to rediscover this favorite local pastime.

everyone pauses on the hour to hear the beloved glockenspiel sing the hour

Lacking in proper milk-maid attire, I had serious costume envy. (I love dress-up, I’d even sport lederhosen with gusto.) We settled for fun braids to get in the spirit– Nana generously embellished them further with flower crowns handcrafted by a festival vendor.

The nighttime crowd has a raccous reputation, but the daytime scene’s family friendly– featuring hilarious wiener dog races and fab traditional cuisine including sausages, sauerkraut, fondue, pretzels, schnitzel, and more. Kids are even welcome in the bier gardens before nightfall so they can enjoy their share of accordion-accompanied chicken-dancing while the fraus and frauleins raise bier steins.

this booth inspired me to whip up my grandma’s Hungarian cabbage rolls back at home

Center Sister cut it up with her Nana on the dance floor, and Firstborn was later called up on stage.

If one was to defrag their heritage like a computer hard-drive our girls’ might actually be up to 50% German, but genealogy isn’t really the point here… In order to raise compassionate, globally-minded humans we aim to celebrate all cultures. I can lecture from textbooks all day long, but international immersion experiences like this fun festival round out our homeschool efforts in a memorable way– sans airfare! (Thanks, Nana & Bruce for hosting us.) Prost!

Sidenote: Lest you feel bad for Little Man, rest assured he had a cultural experience of his own with Daddy (#mantime), noshing on baby octopi at the local sushi bar. Auf wiedersehen!

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