Oktoberfest is an annual tradition sponsored by Student Programming at the University of Dallas (SPUD). It has all the elements for a great event: good music, great company and, best of all, beer. In traditional German fashion, some students wore dirndls and lederhosen as they ate brats and drank to keep the spirit of the Hofbrauhaus alive in Irving, Texas.
This year, Oktoberfest held a beer tasting and nixed the usual closed-off beer garden. Upon asking several upperclassmen how they felt about the absence of the beer garden, the majority replied with a resounding shrug of the shoulders — understanding that the beer garden caused some issues for the student body in the past and would not be missed. One student described the beer garden as a “segregation,” in which the upperclassmen miss out on the music and the underclassmen complain that the beer garden prohibits them from spending time with upperclassmen. This year, everyone celebrated Oktoberfest together, whether or not they were 21.
In lieu of the beer garden, SPUD offered students of age a beer tasting before Oktoberfest began. The event was from 8 to 9 p.m.,and, for $5, students received three four-ounce servings of different Oktoberfest beers, a full size 12-ounce beer of their choice, an Oktoberfest 2015 stein and a soft pretzel which, after drinking all that beer, was a Godsend.
SPUD traditions coordinator Andrew Narduzzi planned the event, and it was a huge success.
“We were really pleased with how it turned out. I really hope that it will continue in the future,” SPUD Director Stephen Thie said.
Narduzzi also found the band for the evening, Dr. Zog, who successfully kept students dancing, and wove through the crowd a few times with an accordion. With engaging music, they perfectly fit the Oktoberfest atmosphere.
This year, the celebration took place in Haggar Foyer due to the inclement weather.
“We were really skeptical to have it indoors when we made the decision, but the forecasts told us it was going to rain all weekend,” Thie said. “I’m so happy we made it indoors. It really felt like a beer hall and everyone was having a great time. I’m really proud.”
The weather did not deter any students from enjoying the event; after all, what could keep a UD student from beer and European festivities?
This year’s Oktoberfest is another celebration to be fondly remembered. The weather was a small inconvenience overshadowed by UD’s appreciation for this German celebration, delicious beer-tasting and festive music.