Sept. 25, 2007
Fredericksburg, Texas is known throughout the state as being an outpost of German heritage, with many of its citizens being direct descendents of the liberal, educated German nobility that settled the area in the mid-1800s. Due to this unique background, Fredericksburg hasn't always followed the trends of the rest of Texas. In fact, during the Civil War, the town was among the leaders of Texas' Pro-Union anti-slavery movement.
A short 1 hour trip up I10 from San Antonio
to Hiway 87 takes you right into downtown Fredericksburg.
Today, Fredericksburg celebrates its heritage every year as summer ends and fall begins with the German holiday, Oktoberfest. This year's celebration will take place on October 5-7, and will feature its annual line-up of German music, Oompah and other musical acts. Some of the guests include: the Havlak Batla Polka Time Band, Rennie and the Happy Travelers, Jodie Mikula Orchestra, The Bandaids, The Boerne Village Band, The Seven Dutchmen, and the TubaMeisters. The festivities will take place in two tents and two stages at Marktplatz in downtown Fredericksburg.
Of course, Oktoberfest will feature the German food staples of pretzels, sausages, kraut, and of course, beer, but this is Texas after all, and no festival would be complete without fajitas, burgers, shish kebobs, and nachos. In addition to the good eats, the 26th annual Oktoberfest will feature polka and waltz contests, face painting, games, and entertainment for the kids, and many booths offering arts and crafts from area artisans.
Oktoberfest kicks off Friday night at 6:00 PM and lasts until midnight. Saturday and Sunday’s festivities get started in the morning at 10:00 AM and goes until midnight both nights. Tickets are $6 for adults and $1 for children, and three-day passes are available for $15.
For the town of Fredericksburg, Oktoberfest ushers in the beginning of the tourist and festival season. Besides Oktoberfest, the town also hosts the Mesquite Art Festival, Texas Wine Month Trail, and several other activities. As the Christmas season nears, the town celebrates with parades, concerts, home tours, and more art shows, and wine and food shows.
Just about the time the town finishes cleaning up after Oktoberfest, it will begin preparing for another festival that will take place October 13-15. The Mesquite Art Festival will feature more that 50 woodworking artisans showing their wares at the Marktplatz in downtown Fredericksburg. The festival is known as the world’s largest selection of mesquite art, and features sculptures, furniture, gifts, ornaments, and architectural items.