The Straits Times
Published on Sep 22, 2012

'The keg is tapped' on world's biggest beer festival


MUNICH (AFP) - The world's largest beer festival opened with a pop on Saturday as the first keg was tapped at Munich's Oktoberfest, a 16-day extravaganza of lederhosen, oompah music and millions of ales.

With the traditional cry of "O'zapft is" ("The keg is tapped") at midday, Mayor Christian Ude cracked open the first barrel and handed a foamy "Mass" (litre-sized glass) to a grateful Horst Seehofer, Bavaria's state premier.

A steady drizzle did not seem to put the party-goers off as long queues formed around 8am (2pm Singapore time) outside the bigger beer tents, two hours before the massive halls were to open and well before the suds began to flow.

American students Olivia Dassler, 19 and Brittany Cowan, 20, originally from California, came all the way from their university in Florence, Italy for the unique Oktoberfest experience.