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Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest 2010 - Oktoberfest

A New Show Hit The West Coast In 2010, And It Was About More Than Just Cars...

Greg Emmerson
Jan 3, 2011
Photographer: Dave Meister

If you've ever had the good fortune to stumble into Munich for Oktoberfest, you'll know it's a raucous, drunken gathering celebrating Bavarian beer and the ability to consume copious amounts of it.

Eurp_1102_01_o+big_bear_lake_oktoberfest_2010+oktoberfest Photo 2/20   |   Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest 2010 - Oktoberfest

Naturally, it's inspired people all over the world. And the good people of Big Bear Lake in California have held their own Oktoberfest tribute for the last 40 years.

Widely recognized for both his guile and cunning, Bernie Chacon from decided the ski resort-based, German-themed event was the perfect excuse for a European car show/gathering/party and set about making it happen.

Eurp_1102_02_o+big_bear_lake_oktoberfest_2010+bamboo_jetta_coupe Photo 3/20   |   Mike Pitman's bamboo-themed Mk2 Jetta Coupe VR6 (et 4/10) joined the Sunday morning cruise

With help from fifteen52 and a handful of vendors such as Eurocode, ABD, Air Lift, Rotiform, Miro, etc, the plan was hatched.

The three-day event kicked off on Friday with a scavenger hunt for early birds, a pub crawl and then a party at B's Backyard Bar-B-Que & Boathouse where a hearty meal was enjoyed.

Saturday morning started with the judged car show at Interlaken Shopping Center. The event also included a Twinkie-eating contest, dizzy relay and the popular Air Lift limbo contest. The latter quickly became a full contact sport as people piled onto cars in order to lower them further. That afternoon, most people piled into the Big Bear Convention Center for the serious aspect of Oktoberfest - eating and drinking authentic German sausage, bread and beer.

Eurp_1102_03_o+big_bear_lake_oktoberfest_2010+volkswagen Photo 4/20   |   Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest 2010 - Oktoberfest

Inevitably, the success of Saturday night saw diminished numbers for the North Shore Cruise on Sunday morning around Big Bear Lake. The drive took them to the Alpine Slide, which was open for unlimited fun to anybody who purchased the full party pack available from the organizers.

With the People's Choice awards ceremony taking place in the afternoon, it was a packed weekend for Oktoberfest participants.

Eurp_1102_05_o+big_bear_lake_oktoberfest_2010+beetle Photo 5/20   |   Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest 2010 - Oktoberfest

Thanks to the genius of bolting the car show onto the existing German beer and food festival, much of the organization was already taken care of: the motels were expecting large crowds, food and drink was readily available, everybody was in a good mood, there were even shuttle buses to the evening party. The organizers even secured reduced motel rates.

With this much foresight, we're sure everybody will return for more of the same in 2011. So check out for further details.

By Greg Emmerson
1078 Articles



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