Countdown until opening day .....

                                Oktoberfest Visits is an Amazon Affiliates member. Please use Amazon for your purchases; both Oktoberfest and all your other needs. Just click the logo below.

Visit Dave Finlay's Oktoberfest Resources site to learn more about our past visits, some history and interesting anecdotes.
Visit another friendly Oktoberfest Blog; The Bros Oktoberfest. Alcoholische and Betrunken learned everything they know from us.

Click Above to See the Status of the Wiesn.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Reservation Locked - Write it down!

Thanks to the efforts of Paulaner Girl, I just faxed in our reservation at the Hippodrome.

I had to pay up front... so this is now a done deal. 30 Euros (8 people) each, which is applied to our food there.

Date: 9/28/09 - Monday
Time: 3:30pm - 6:30pm

They will have a snack spread on the table (Radishes, Bacon, Cheese, Bread, etc.) and a 19 euro credit toward beer and other stuff!


Parrotheads in Paris

Apparently Jimmy Buffett heard that Barleyman and Paulaner will be in Paris this September. He cancelled his west coast dates, and scheduled a concert in Paris September 26. Unfortunately for us (and Jimmy), we will already be in Munich. I guess he forgot to check our schedule :>).

Monday, June 29, 2009

Getting closer .....

Getting closer to Germany is getting closer to Paulaner. Even in Metz. Which is a wonderfull city! As we are heading for Luxembourg I wonder what beer I can spot for you next week.

Another Sad Day

I had to do something I hoped would not be necessary. I created a new table tracking the number of rounds of bier that someone must pay for because of a lack of posting. The first to reach this glorious distinction.... RodG

Good for those of us that must drink his biers.


You must be desperate! But it's French. Beer with Tequila. Something for Rod?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A sad day.....

First Farrah, now Michael. Two icons from my younger days.

I remember my mom outlawing the poster. I just hung it on the back side of my closet door.

I also remember Thriller. Watching the video on MTV, hooked up to our TV and home stereo. John S thought it was amazing. I did too.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hippodrome Reservations

We have the opportunity to make reservations in the Hippodrome tent for Monday for what they call their "Hippo Happy Hour" We would have a reserved table from 3:30-6:30. At 6:30 we would have to vacate the table, and hopefully could find another table. Since they only will take reservations for 6, 8 or 10 persons, we would have to reserve and pay for 8 people ahead of time. The cost is 30 euros per person at the time of the reservation. That includes some radishes, cheese and bread, and goes toward a minimum beer consumption. There is no actual cost for the reservation itself. The only other reservations that I can find are lunch on Sunday or Monday. If we want to take the reservation, we will have to act really soon. So we need to take a vote and decide.

So post your vote, yeah or nay?

Post about proposed activities at Ocktoberfest

Per request, some discussion about where to go, what to see while in Munich. Um: Hof Brau Haus, Weisn (Beer Tents), Cloister Andechs, two, maybe three day trips. Go with the crowd. Would like to see a bit more of the food market near Hof Brau Haus; it has been fun during the odd hours I've been.

I'd suggest:

Day 1 ArrivalDay 2Day 3Day 4Departure
2:00 HbHTegernseeCloister Andechs?Early morning Checkout
7:00 WeisnEnglischer GardenTrain to Airport

Nudist Ocktoberfest?


Important Issues of the Day

How's a person to decide?!


Just a refresher in case you were interested...

Hotel Alfa

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Henk & Gemma Asked...

"What happened with the opportunity to reserve a table? I remember that Barleyman with LSI has a liaison with their subsidiary in Munich. Does that work out?"

Here's the latest email I received from Hotel Alfa concerning this topic..

Dear Keith, hope you´re fine. I only would like to inform you, that I´am still taking care on your reservation at the Octoberfest. As soon as I definitively get notice about the exact date and hour I can offer you, I will let you know. Lot´s of greetings from Munich and have a nice time Anton Hotel Alfa

Monday, June 22, 2009

Favorite Tents

Do we have a tent strategy this year? Last time I was in Munich, I think we only made it into the tents once, and once is just not enough. Since the whole purpose is to attend Oktoberfest, we need to spend more quality time communing with the German people in their natural habitat, while drinking their national beverage. In other words, visit the beer tents. So I propose we have a plan.

In past years, which tents have been our favorites? I must admit, my memory gets a little foggy as to which tents we've even been in. Of course, true to my name, I like Paulaner. The tents that serve it are: Armbrustschützenzelt, Winzerer Fähndl, and Käfer's Wies'n Schänke. However, I can't ever remember being in these tents. I know we've been in Löwenbräu and Augustiner-Festhalle, but from there it all becomes fuzzy. I'm sure I just ate too many pretzals.

Recommendations & Tips for the Trip

Some Updated Tips n Tricks for Oktoberfest

  • Go with the group. A laid back atmosphere is critical in Bavaria
  • Get plenty of rest before you arrive. we go non stop.
  • Have your reservation at the Rehab center made before you leave. You will be unable to work touch tone phones after the trip. It's best to just have them meet you at the airport when you arrive home.
  • Eat a lot of food. It will provide a good base for the beer
  • Try new things. Even if you have never had Haxen, and think it looks too much like a pig knuckle, try it anyway*.
  • Sleep on the train. Just make sure there is someone awake to make sure you get off at the stop.
  • Check out the German Rail Passes. They have 3 or 5 day passes that allow you to go on the DB and S-Bahn lines. In the US you can get these at AAA. The only issue is that the twin passes require you to travel together (i.e. you get one pass)
  • Make sure you try the Donner in the little shop near the Hotel Alfa. ask for them 'spicy'. Do not take the Donner to bed. You will wake up smelling of onions and spicy lamb.
  • Don't ask for wine at the Beer Tent. Lynch is able to sneak it in for you.
  • Don't ride the upside down rides after eating a hendel, a bretzel, 2 sausages, a radish, and 4 Maß of Bier.
  • For $50 they will let you lead the band.
  • They don't serve ice like they do in the states. Even at Burger King. In fact, the Burger King doesn't make ice until after 11am. even then you get one cube for a big gulp.
  • Try not to attend over the daylight savings time change. They get really confused, as do you. You may even show up early for your train.
  • Never go in the pissort in the Hbf.
  • Wear comfortable waterproof clothes. Between the rain and the beer, you need to keep dry. Many times we will leave the hotel early in the morning and return early the next day.
  • Never, under any circumstances, look inside a sausage.
  • Never sit at a table with a sign on it that says something scary in German
  • Make sure you sit near the Aussies and Kiwis in the beer tents. Have your camera ready at all times.
  • Don't steal lighters from shaven headed crazy ladies in Dachau Irish pubs
  • Don't complain. Don't Bitch. Don't whine. Suck it up and follow Vozel.
  • Have fun, enjoy seeing old friends, and remember, What goes on in Munich, stays in Munich.
*Note: This rule does not apply to Tuna fish pizza.


An important ingredient in Beer is Hops. Only the Female Flowers (see the picture) of a Hops Plant are to be used. So always read the ingredient list before you drink. Just avoid Flatulism.

"Lock Steward Payment"

Today we had to pass 7 non-automatic Locks. All serviced manually by turning wheels (by hand) for door opening/closing left and then right, filling the Lock (we are still up) and again to open the doors. This system exists from the 19th century and still in operation. The Guy who operates the Lock lives in a House next, mostly in the middle of nowhere. He respects assistance and likes to be awarded. So today I turned wheels and gave "bottles" of Bols Jenever. I believe 7 Lock Stewards living between Dun sur Meuse and Verdun will have a happy night.

This Week's Posting Theme

I have certainly enjoyed the posts of the last two weeks since everyone is trying to meet the weekly posting challenge. I am especially envious of the posts from Barbus and Schlumbgerlady; who wouldn't be. Their trip looks wonderful.

I propose a theme for this week's postings, though. As an Oktoberfest blog, and since we once again have a newbie in our midst, I propose that all posts this week address something of an educational nature about Oktoberfest for our friend, RodG. We should take this opportunity to tell RodG seem of the secrets we have learned over the years, give him some guidance for navigating through the maze we call mecca, and maybe share some interesting anecdotes. RodG started last week with his post about bier types to avoid (should have been which ones to savor), but nonetheless an inquisitive topic.

My first words of wisdom... Treat the visit as your one and only visit. Enjoy yourself and try to do as much as possible, but don't feel compelled to do everything everyone else might do. Four days is short, but the visit is about friendship and culture, interspersed with some bier and story telling. Hopefully you can be the source of a future Oktoberfest memory.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Fathers Day

Hope everyone is relaxing today and enjoying father's day!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Knowing what beers to avoid

I once mentioned to Chugger that some beers cause a reaction in my body that is unpleasent - sometimes to the point of incapacitation. He nodded, knowingly, and rattled off a bunch of stuff about yeast and brewing process as if I understood and I said, yeah and uh-hu as if I did understand, but, in fact, I did not and do not.

Without taking me into the science of brewology, is there a simple guide to what to avoid if one is particularly prone to digestive distress? What should I be careful not to consume?

Une boteil du Champaign

Une boteil du Champaign.

Dom Petrus Perignon

I found the Holy Grale. Dom Perignon, he who gave us the Champaign and the Quality Lifestyle. Champaign is only Wine that makes a Woman every year more beautifull. God save our Soules. R.I.P. and I promiss I will always drink your invented Nectar with full respect.

Is this more original?

Stein of Munich Beer
Mass of Munich beer at the Seehaus

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Siegestor

I think we should stop and see the Siegestor. It looks very cool. But should we first quench our thirst at Englisher Gardens?
The Siegestor (en: Victory Gate) in Munich, is a three-arched triumphal arch crowned with a statue of Bavaria with a lion-quadriga, similar in style to the Arch of Constantine in Rome, the Marble Arch in London, the Arc de Triomphe in Paris and the Brandenburger Tor in Berlin. It is located between the university and the Ohmstraße, on the intersection of the Leopoldstraße and the Ludwigstraße. Therefore it divides the two Munich districts of Maxvorstadt and Schwabing.


The gate was commissioned by King
Ludwig I of Bavaria, designed by Friedrich von Gärtner and completed by Eduard Mezger in 1852. The quadriga was created by Martin von Wagner. The gate was originally dedicated to the glory of the Bavarian army (dem bayerischen Heere zum Ruhme). Today the Siegestor is a monument and reminder to peace. After sustaining heavy damage in World War II, the gate was - similar to the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche in Berlin - reconstructed and restored only partially. The inscription on the back side is by Wilhelm Hausenstein and reads Dem Sieg geweiht, vom Krieg zerstört, zum Frieden mahnend, which translates as "Dedicated to victory, destroyed by war, reminding of peace". In the last couple of years, the statues that remained were meticulously cleaned and restored. The Siegestor is 21 meters high, 24 Meters wide, and 12 meters deep.
It was featured in
The Amazing Race 9 as a pit-stop.

Lets Go To Schwabing

Maybe a combo trip to Englischer Garten, combined with lunch or dinner in Schwabing... It sounds like our kind of place, but I don't think I have been there. Near where the Hamilton's stayed.


The Siegestor (front), on Leopoldstraße between Munich's Maxvorstadt and Schwabing

Schwabing is a borough in the northern part of Munich, the capital of the German state of Bavaria. It is divided into the city borough 4 (Schwabing-West) and the city borough 12 (Schwabing-Freimann). For further information on the Munich boroughs, see: Boroughs of Munich.

Schwabing used to be famous as Munich's bohemian quarter and is still popular among tourists and locals for its collection of bars, clubs, and restaurants. Another popular attraction is the Englischer Garten, or English Garden, one of the world's largest public parks.

Since Munich's largest universities, Ludwigs-Maximilians-Universität and the Technical University of Munich, can be found in nearby Maxvorstadt, there is a lot of student activity on and around Leopoldstraße.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The European Beer Museum

***** TEASER *****

Tomorrow we will visit the European Beer Museum in Stenay. 2500m2, graphics and exhibitions describe the origins of beer making, its history and process. And of course in the Tavern a range of 50 artisan and commercial beers await us.

***** STAY CONNECTED *****

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A New Type of Blog Entry

As I sit on my patio with my laptop and a glass of wine (hope the wine isn't sacrilegious on a bier site), I began to reminisce. My mind wandered, and I began to see bier gnomes cavorting in my back yard. They looked oddly familiar. One was carrying a large sack of barley, another was disturbing my concentration through loud intestinal rumblings and expulsions as he marked his territory.

As they went about their activity, I noticed something intriguing yet puzzling. Something, or someone, was missing. I couldn't pinpoint the discrepancy, so I went over to them to ask. They spoke in a tongue that was totally unfamiliar to me; even with my vast travel experience and cultural exposure. Being bier gnomes, I expected to hear German, or at least something vaguely familiar. But no, it almost sounded like Dutch. It wasn't Dutch, but was more like a combination of a French accent, with Chinese sounding phrases, interspersed with something from eastern Russia. We could not communicate. So I drank some more wine, and offered them a bier. It took awhile, but once they understood, they began slamming the Hofbrauhaus Dunkel I had in the 'fridge.

After 3 biers each, their garbled speech began to make some sense. Maybe the wine was affecting my senses. As they began to walk away, I finally realized my earlier puzzlement. I was in the middle of a Joe Shannon story.

It made no sense, moved all over the place, and no matter how much I tried to change the topic, they managed to pick right back up where they left off. Ahh, I was about to go insane. Ever have that feeling when listening to Joe?

Fortunately, the story I was in was actually a dream. Joe was not really there. Or at least that's my story and I'm sticking to it. I think there is a moral here somewhere, but I cannot find one. I'm sure Marion's pizza and a pitcher of Budweiser for lunch with Einfahrt had nothing to do with it. Don't punish me bier gods, Einfahrt ordered the swill. I'm sure I will be paying for it in other ways for 2 more days.

overheard while traveling

This is from a fodor's forum in which people posted the funniest thing they ever heard while traveling

Copycat Castles
"Sitting on the steps of Sacré-Coeur in Paris, overhead two young women perusing brochure of Southern Germany and planning the later stages of their trip:
1st woman: "Do we want to go to this New-swan-stine castle built by this mad king they talk about in here?"
2nd woman: "No, I heard he just copied the one in Disneyland." -- overheard by Fodor's member twoflower

This Year's Trip Theme

Chugger and Einfahrt were overheard today (while sampling an amber nectar) discussing proposed themes for this year's excursion. Many off-the-wall ideas were raised, and Einfahrt opined that a religious theme, something like "back to God" or "Thank God for Bier" might be appropriate. He suggested that all our day trips, and local venues include something of the religious nature, such as a monastery. In keeping with that theme, Einfahrt was heard to suggest this attire as the official uniform for the trip.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Wunderbar! Official Website Updated

Mein Freunts!

Ich bin ein Webdesigner. Das doppleganger fur das Bill Gates. Javohl!

Check out the updated Official Site. Requests for additions and corrections gracefuly accepted. I will be adding day trip info. RodG CHECK IT OUT DUDE!

Click Here if your brain is addled with Barley!

My Beer Song

My lovely wife found this and purchased one for me. FYI in case you care to do likewise:

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Random Heart Wrenching Picture

Dilbert Still The Best

Certainly targeted at our network experts...

Week-end fête de la bière (CHARLEVILLE MÉZIÈRES) en Champagne Ardenne

Today we will go to Charleville Mezierees and will stay for 2-3 days. Although still in the French Ardennes, it is close to the Champagne area. So the call it Champagne Ardenne. Interesting is they organize Beer Festivals next to Champaign events. I'll keep you posted!


This is what Frommer has to say about Tegernsee

On the eastern side of this lake, a former Benedictine monastery, Sankt Quirinus, has been restored, and with it, a brewery (Herzogliches Bräustüberl) and a more formal restaurant (Schlossgaststätte). Owned by her Royal Highness, Elizabeth im Bavaria, the complex with its beer hall is the oldest in the region. The food at this drinking and dining facility is vastly improved.

Is this the place we were talking about previously? Have you guys gone before?

Monday, June 08, 2009

In keeping with "Une Boteil du Vin"

How can a place named "Nooner" be anything but great?

After Einfahrt Gets Serviced ...

This is what he will see out his windshield as the Corvette quickly pulls away...

54 Famous and Important Words

"... Furthermore, we wish to emphasize that in future in all cities, markets and in the country, the only ingredients used for the brewing of beer must be Barley, Hops, Yeast and Water. Whosoever knowingly disregards or transgresses upon this ordinance, shall be punished by the Court authorities confiscating such barrels of beer, without fail. ..."

While only a small portion of the overall Reinheitsgebot, it is infamous nonetheless.

Djoseph & Francwes

Saw this in Namur Belgium. In the cage there is a little Snale. The bigger Snale outside could be the Mother Snale. I have no clue what it is about, but somehow the two Guys reminds me on some of the members of our Oktoberfestvisits gang. I leave it up to you :)

Time to clean up the sports car

Summer is here, weather has been a bit on and off, but mostly warm and sunny. A weekend is coming up where a drive on curvy, hilly roads, with top down and a fine looking woman in the passenger seat - with a destination involving fine dining and wine overlooking cliffs and river views.

Net: got to get the car serviced, polished and in full Porsche splendor.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Une boteil du vin

Une boteil du vin.

Grand canyon in the Fall

For those thinking of hiking in September

Test post via BB email

Well, again: Hi!
Test post via SMS

Well Hi!

New tech

Congrats to Everyone !

Congratulations to all 2009 Oktoberfestians for 100% posting participation this week. Special congrats to the newbie, RodG, and our traveling bloggers, Barbus and Schlumbergerlady.

The problem, though, is that with 100% blogging, there is no free Bier this week. I'm sure that over the next 100 and some odd days, there will be a few rounds that accumulate. I'm so confident I will not be a non-poster, I'm even posting this today before the next week's requirement starts (didn't want Barley Man complaining again).

Anyway, glad to see some on-topic posts (enough with Englisher Garden, though). I like Barley Man's call for posts about new venues to visit, and they do not need to be train trips. As we accumulate suggestions, we can begin debating those sojourns that make sense. Obviously Kloster Andechs for our Sunday pilgrimage is a requirement. Anyone interested in Englisher Garden? We will let this year's Grand Puhbah proclaim a suggested itinerary, and disseminate the appropriate speakings of Bier according to Larry.

May the Prost Be with You.

p.s. Hey Barley Man, want to update your website with this year's roster?


Considering a 30 day moritorium on booze to jumpstart my weightloss efforts - somebody talk me out of it!!

Saturday, June 06, 2009


The Finlay girls are going to be unleashed unattended in Ireland and France in a few short weeks. Europe, beware!

Friday, June 05, 2009

Oh the places we could go!

New places to visit should be a continuing topic. We've all been to Munich many times, so while some can be seen again and again (like Kloster Andechs), others are not viable candidates for the agenda due to a high cost to value ratio (like Rothenburg, Neuschwanstein, Bamberg, Berchsgarten). Value being a subjective assessment of enjoyment. Sadly the ISAR raft trips don't run that late in the year (would be fun). My postings will be focused on the new trips we can take.

First up a local Munich Favorite: Residenz Royal Palace (OK, I think I have been here, but never inside)

The Residence (German: Residenz) is the former royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs in the city center of Munich. The Residence is the largest downtown palace in Germany and serves today as one of the finest room decoration museums in Europe.

Königsbau of Munich Residence

The complex of buildings contains ten courtyards and the museum displays 130 rooms. The three main parts are the Königsbau (near the Max-Joseph-Platz), the Alte Residenz (towards the Residenzstraße) and the Festsaalbau (towards the Hofgarten). A wing of the Festsaalbau contains the Cuvilliés Theatre since the reconstruction of the Residence after World War II.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Yeah or Nay?

Should I delete all the alumni names above that are listed since they do no post, or even pay attention any longer?

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

OK, one more graduation post. The twins, Candy and Maura, with the graduate. I'm in foreground taking a picture. This picture was in the Dayton Daily News this morning (web version).

Obama Man

A musical tribute...

Two eggs in the morning

After some Beer consumption the evening before. Just that you know.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Graduation Complete

Dinner for fourteen, then off to Dayton's largest performance center for ceremony, procession, and congratulations. There are still two or three graduation parties each day, sometimes for two, three or four graduates at a time. So far, we've only attended three of them. Michele a couple more. Thankfully, not all are for parents.

Another Sad Day...

But we all knew it was coming.
Hey Chugger,

I think it is great that we ar enow tracking posts. Especially since this all started on June 1st. I really like the whole tracking matrix as well. Truly helpful in seeing how we are doing. I love metrics. ;-)

Monday, June 01, 2009

Belgium and Beer

Just to let you know that today we have arrived in Liege. As in Germany the national drink is Beer. A "pintje", as they call it in the Flemish part. They have all sorts of Beer; from light to dark and little to high alcohol percentages. All not my taste. I am glad that by the end of this week we will get closer to the Champaign area in France. Reims here we come!

Welcome to June ! !

Only 109 more days. And, June 1st starts the tally on the weekly post requirement. Most of you have been meeting your requirement, but let's keep it rolling. Soon we should begin discussion around day trips.

The new feature at the top will track those that have (and have not) posted for each given week. Enjoy.