Does the Oktoberfest wobble because of Corona? Too early to make a decision

    Munich (TEH) – The innkeepers have accepted reservation requests from all over the world, the breweries are in the starting blocks to brew the coveted Oktoberfest beer abroad.

    But everything is still on hold: So far it has not been decided whether Munich can celebrate the world’s largest folk festival despite the Corona crisis. The preparations are going according to plan, one hopes still. “Of course, as the organizer of the Oktoberfest, together with all of our partners, I very much hope that there must be no cancellation,” says Munich’s business consultant and Wiesn boss Clemens Baumgartner (CSU).
    A cancellation would have economic consequences with the loss of millions, but also ideal. The colorful pictures of cheerful people in traditional costume, the beer-like, (mostly) peaceful coexistence, and above all the bright blue sky in early autumn – that shapes the image of Munich and Bavaria.
    “I can’t imagine that emotionally,” says Peter Inselkammer, spokesman for the Oktoberfest hosts, about a possible cancellation. «The Oktoberfest is part of the normal annual rhythm. We are all looking forward to it. But we have to wait and see if it’s possible. »
    Events have already been canceled or postponed worldwide until July: theater performances, football games, the Wimbledon tennis tournament, the Bayreuth Festival, the Oberammergau Passion – even the Olympic Games. However, it is still a bit longer until the Oktoberfest: the tapping is planned for September 16, and the Oktoberfest is scheduled for October 4.
    And so those responsible postpone the decision. It should come at the latest possible time, it said. Mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD), who would open the festival, spoke last of “at the end of May, beginning of June at the latest – before the start of the construction work on the Theresienwiese.
    Six million visitors come to the 34-hectare festival site every year during the two festival weeks – keeping your distance is impossible. The majority of the guests come from Munich and Bavaria. Most foreign guests came from countries that are currently worst affected by the corona pandemic: In 2019, the Americans and Italians were the largest visitor group besides the Swiss, followed by the British.
    A rejection would not be the first in the 210-year history of the famous festival – and it would not be the first because of a plague. The fourth Oktoberfest in 1813 was canceled – because of the fighting with Napoleon. A few decades later, cholera was rampant. The festival was canceled twice: 1854 and 1873.