Friday, Incarnation Lutheran Church – the one with the red door on Devine Street – will kick off its fifth annual Oktoberfest celebration in the usual way: with the tapping of a celebratory keg of beer.
But what’s different this year is the closing: on Sunday night, the event will close out with a special “Beer and Hymns” event.
The biggest challenge for festival-goers is what kind of beer to drink at Oktoberfest: not only are the choices staggering – this year, the festival plans to serve 19 different brews – many of the styles are true to their German roots, right down to their confusing names.
The cheat sheet, below, should help, and just might keep you from holding up the beer line.
Pilsner: A light lager infused with hoppy bitterness
Kolsh: Light in body but slightly fruity
Bock: Heavy, malty and smooth
Hefeweizen: Mild wheat beer
Dunkelweisse: Dark wheat beer
Gose: Sour ale made from malted wheat and barley
Radler: An Arnold Palmer with beer subbing for tea
Weizenbock: Full bodied, malty ale
In addition to beer, you’ll find wursts of every type, weiner schnitzel, warm cabbage and apple slaw, spaetzle (German pasta squiggles), sauerkraut and German cookies galore; there also will be entertainment courtesy of The German Connection Band, The Happy Musicians, S.C. Music and Dance Academy and German Friendship Folk Dances and lots of kids activities.
Please note that although the organizers love all of God’s creatures, they ask that all pets stay at home.
The event begins Friday at 11a.m. and continues through Sunday at 8 p.m. For more information (including a full schedule and directions) visit www.oktoberfestcolumbia.com