PHOTO STORY: Costa Rica’s first officially franchised Oktoberfest draws thousands

October 29, 2013

ESCAZÚ, San José – Whether they came for the beer, the sausage, or the cultural experience, hordes of people crowded the Oktoberfest tents in Avenida Escazú last weekend, southwest of the capital. The crowds were diverse: college kids sipping steins, couples sharing pretzels, middle-aged folks clapping along to accordion music, and clusters of children playing games and eating candy.

The Germanic harvest celebration was an enormous victory for Pablo Formal, Oktoberfest engineer and co-proprietor of NuShark Media, a marketing and entertainment company. An ebullient and heavily bearded man, Formal welcomed guests as they arrived last Sunday, linking wristbands and conversing with friends.

“You should have been here yesterday,” Formal told The Tico Times, looking winded by his own success. And then, getting down to business: “Did you get a beer yet?”

In traditional bierhall style, patrons sat at long communal tables and drank from a variety of glasses. Meanwhile, breweries set up their own bars, displays and seating areas to best showcase their brews. Musicians played on a full concert stage, and hopefuls competed for prizes.

From the looks of things, a new tradition has been born.

ok2

A musician plays his accordion above the din of the afternoon crowd.


Robert Isenberg

ok3

Oktoberfest founder Pablo Formal with his girlfriend in front of festival entrance.


Robert Isenberg

ok4

Patrons dressed in traditional Bavarian outfits. One of Formal’s goals was to encourage festive dress.


Robert Isenberg

ok5

Sausages glisten, courtesy Maya’s Lounge Restaurant in Ciudad Colón.


Robert Isenberg

ok8

Los Yoses clothier Concrete sells novelties at a vendor’s table.


Robert Isenberg

ok9

“Heineken Girls” pose in front of a foosball table. Smiling women in dirndls have become a staple of Oktoberfest celebrations.


Robert Isenberg

ok10

Long communal tables accommodate the diverse Oktoberfest crowds.


Robert Isenberg

ok12

San José’s Stiefel Pub displays some favorite craft beers.


Robert Isenberg

ok11

An Imperial bartender operates a tap.


Robert Isenberg

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Five things I learned while watching the sun set over El Clásico
Soccer
766 views
Soccer
766 views

Five things I learned while watching the sun set over El Clásico

Alejandro Zúñiga - October 22, 2018

TIBÁS — It’s difficult to enjoy a spectacular sunset while the concrete grandstand of a 50-year-old stadium shakes haphazardly under…

The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Oct. 22, 2018
Tico Times Weekly Digest
392 views
Tico Times Weekly Digest
392 views

The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Oct. 22, 2018

Alexander Villegas - October 22, 2018

It's Monday everyone. That means it's time for another dose of The Tico Times Weekly Digest. This week's Digest is…

This week in the Peace Corps: Lessons from indigenous communities in Limón province
Changemakers
847 views
Changemakers
847 views

This week in the Peace Corps: Lessons from indigenous communities in Limón province

Crystal / Regional Peace Corps Leader - October 22, 2018

After four years with Peace Corps Costa Rica, I am reflective about living and working in indigenous communities throughout Limón…