APG Oktoberfest to be rescheduled

Germany won't be coming to Aberdeen this weekend, as the second annual Oktoberfest scheduled for this weekend, Oct.11-13, has been canceled.

The festival, hosted by Aberdeen Proving Ground, has been rescheduled for Oct. 25 to 27 in light of the federal government shutdown, APG spokesperson Kelly Luster said Monday.

Luster said he cannot predict if the change in event date will hurt attendance at the German-themed festival.

"It's impossible to speculate how many people will or will not attend Oktoberfest on the new dates," Luster said in an e-mail.

Luster said APG began planning for this year's festival immediately following the high turnout and success following the 2012 Oktoberfest weekend.

"Detailed planning began several months ago," Luster said.

The free three-day festival themed "Hooah with Oompah" will turn APG's Sunshine and Sports Field into Little Germany, with German-inspired food and drinks and fun for the entire family.

People interested in a little cardio activity may want to sign up for the 5K Volksmarch, a non-competitive fitness walk. Then, grab a drink a water and head to the "festival hall," Festhalle, to dance the night away to some musical stylings and entertainment.

And don't leave the kids with the baby-sitter. Pony rides, inflatable bounce houses and a puppet show are just some of the kid-friendly activities to keep the youngsters entertained. There will also be a Teen Zone for older children.

APG will be hosting a fireworks display on Saturday night, Oct. 26, at 9 p.m.

Oktoberfest will also pay homage to APG's surrounding communities with a daily special salute ceremony featuring local government leaders alongside senior APG officials.

"Our goal is to have a celebration honoring the partnership and relationships Aberdeen Proving Ground has with the communities surrounding the installation," Luster said in an e-mail. "It is important for APG, as a community and partner to give back to our friends around the installation."

On Friday, the town of Bel Air and Havre de Grace will be honored. Saturday, Edgewood and Aberdeen receive special treatment and on Sunday Cecil County will be the focal point.

"Keep in mind, our workforce lives in these communities – they shop at the same stores, attend the same churches and access many of the same services contributing to the economies and overall well being of these communities," Luster said of the special presentations.

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