By Joe Johnson
This past weekend was full of Oktoberfest celebrations at Sugar Mountain Resort. In fact, this year’s events gathered one of the largest crowds yet for Oktoberfest; many people even made trips from several states over just to attend the annual family-friendly beer festival at Sugar Mountain.
“It was one of our top Oktoberfests ever for sure,” said Kim Jochl, Vice President/Director of Marketing and Merchandising for Sugar Mountain Resort, “We don’t do a head count because we don’t charge admission, but all of our vendors did very well. The lift rides did amazingly well too; there were also a lot of kids playing in the children’s fun center. We sold a lot of beer and a lot of bratwurst. The parking lots were full and the buses were going back and forth all day long!”
Attendees from various different states gathered at Sugar Mountain to experience the festivities held last weekend; more and more people from across the country are flocking to the High Country to see what all the fuss is about regarding Sugar Mountain’s version of Oktoberfest. “We had a crowd with a bigger footprint than just North Carolina this year,” said Jochl, “I got a call two days before the Oktoberfest from a lady who was attending from Chicago. We also had people from South Carolina, Georgia, and other states that border North Carolina attend the celebrations. Oktoberfest at Sugar Mountain is seeing a very broad footprint of attendees!”
The Harbour Town Fest Band, a 15-member musical ensemble, returned to Oktoberfest this year to perform live Bavarian music for attendees throughout the day. Jochl emphasized the role that Harbour Town Fest Band, and its leader Ken, play in creating the joyful atmosphere that surrounds the annual Oktoberfest celebrations each year. “The Harbour Towne Fest Band is always a big hit; Ken, the bandleader, summoned all these different instrument players who play Oktoberfest celebrations all year long,” said Jochl, “Ken is an outstanding entertainer! He really enlivens the Oktoberfest; he interacts with the crowd, he dances with them, and he makes it a very festive atmosphere.”
Following along with Oktoberfest tradition, a Bavarian Costume Contest was held during the festivities for those attendees who wished to participate; Jochl noted that each year, the costume contest grows larger and attracts more participants than the previous year. There aren’t any big prizes offered to the winners of the contest, but attendees always thoroughly enjoy witnessing participants show off their favorite Bavarian garb to the crowd!
“Oktoberfest serves as Sugar Mountain’s precursor to getting staff and customers excited for the upcoming winter season,” said Jochl, “We are officially ready to roll into winter!”
Oktoberfest at Sugar Mountain Resort is held annually during the second weekend of October; next year’s Oktoberfest celebrations will occur on October 11 and 12.
For more information about Sugar Mountain Resort, Oktoberfest, or other events offered at Sugar Mountain during the winter season visit http://www.skisugar.com/