Beer maids in costume at Munich Oktoberfest.

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On Oct. 12, 1810, Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria was married to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. A huge public festival was held on the fields outside the gates of Munich, including a horse race in the royal couple’s honor.

The horse races were held again the following year, growing the festival into an annual occasion: Oktoberfest

As the festival grew, it added more and more rides, carnival games, agricultural shows and circus acts.

The signature draw of the festival — beer — was initially offered at a few scattered stands. Those were soon replaced by massive tents and beer halls capable of seating 94,000 people. Read more…

More about Holidays, Beer, Germany, Fall, and History

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The history of Oktoberfest is much bigger than beer