Oktoberfest is one of Nashville's favorite fall traditions, taking place each October in the historic Germantown area. Although people may not normally associate the drinking and partying of Oktoberfest with church and worship, this is where Nashville's Oktoberfest got its start and is why the festival's slogan is "Celebrating Faith, Friendship and Fun."
Founded in the 1850s, Germantown became a National Register Historic District in 1979 and has kept much of its distinctive neighborhood charm in spite of the decline that usually accompanies urban sprawl. Two churches in the area, Monroe Street United Methodist Church and Church of the Assumption, decided to sponsor a mutual homecoming for people who had lived in the area or had ties to Germany to help preserve the flavor of the Germantown community.
Both church buildings were finished at the beginning of the 20th century and had suffered some deterioration in the intervening 100 years, so as the homecoming became a festival and started to bring in funds, the money was used to restore the church buildings.
The Oktoberfest festival kicks off with a joint worship service on Saturday and features tours of the churches and booths sponsored by the churches including a country store and a bake sale. A couple of blocks away, Oktoberfest merges with the Germantown Street Festival making the event even larger.
Nashville's celebrated its 34th Annual Oktoberfest Oct. 12 and 13, 2013.
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