Leiderhosen, accordions and beirgartens. Welcome to Blumenau, Brazil home to the largest Oktoberfest party in the America’s. Stepping through the gates, the entire place was decorated like a little German village complete with gingerbread men. Brazilian bands played German music on three stages, and there were more beer booths than I’ve ever seen before.
Although I grew up in Pennsylvania, a state with German heritage, it was my first Oktoberfest. I expected the beer, the music and the outfits, but I didn’t expect Brazil’s Oktoberfest to lack “Brazil”. Not even a note of samba music (though it looked like some people were trying to dance samba to the German music), and no samba style outfits, or Brazilian bar-b-que. The food was in fact pretty German. The X-Alamao (pronounced cheeez alemou), a mix of meats, onions and peppers was delicious and quelled our dancing hunger. Plenty of mustards and even a hot sauce or two. The only thing missing were pretzels, which were no where to be found much to my Pennsylvanian chagrin.
The only thing to do at Oktoberfest is to drink, so of course dove right in, ordering two rounds of local beer before braving the dance floor. Liquid courage I believe its called. Surrounded by a German dance troupe in traditional costumes, we attempted a German folk dance, sung in Portuguese, which resulted in complete confusion on our end.
And then it got worse. Trying to hide on the outside of the dance floor Danny was spotted and pulled into a folk dance by one of the German dancers. What followed was a mix of cultural confusion as Danny whirled his way from partner to partner on the dance floor in time to the music. Dancing around the floor he shot me painful glances each time he whirled by. For not understanding the dance masters directions and without much help from his partner he did quite well and in the end I think everyone walked away with all of their toes. 🙂
So it was our first Oktoberfest, but certainly not our last. Hopefully the next one will be in Germany!
Wanna see more Oktoberfest pictures? Check out our flickr page.