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Beer, Music and Blue Angels At Oktoberfest Fete

Corte Madera's annual celebration draws an enormous and thirsty crowd.

The Blue Angels thundered overhead, just after the oompah music of Tom Torriglia's German Music Band wrapped up during the annual Oktoberfest celebration at Old Corte Madera Town Square.

Everything came together perfectly for the occasion. After a week of rain and clouds, people were ready to step outside for some fun on a warm Saturday afternoon.

Jana Haehl, a member of Corte Madera's Beautification Committee, looked at the swaying crowd and doubted whether anyone would be going home when last call arrived in an hour. The event was scheduled to last until 5 p.m., but people were still arriving at 4 p.m.

Crowds arrived early, bringing their appetites and a thirst for award-winning beer. The party started at noon and by 2:30 p.m. the Lions Club had already run out of bratwurst. A sausage plate with German potato salad and sauerkraut was selling for $6, but demand was greater than supply.

Other vendors were also doing brisk business filling stomachs and beer mugs. The Moms Club of Corte Madera and Larkspur was serving up Lappert's Ice Cream specials, while Max's Cafe, Marin Joe's and Stefano's offered hot food.

Marin Brewing Company, fresh off a gold-medal victory for its Three Flowers IPA from the Great American Beer Fest, was one of 14 breweries at Oktoberfest. For a $20 entry fee, revelers received a commemorative beer mug that could be filled for free at each beer tent. Other popular brewers included Anchor Steam, Broken Drum, North Coast, Anderson Valley, Pizza Orgasmica, Hoppy, Lagunitas, Lhasa, Sierra Nevada, Sudwerk, Mucky Duck, Lost Coast and Maui Brewing. Waterstone Winery was also there to represent the grape set.

The pavilion rocked with music from the Corte Madera Town Band and the heavy metal sounds of tubas from the lederhosen-clad German Music Band. Lazy Horse had fans young and old dancing to its classic rock cover songs.

Mayor Alexandra Cock was working the main entrance, while councilwoman Diane Furst was enjoying the day with her daughter. Melissa Gill, who is running against Cock and councilman Bob Ravasio for one of the two open seats on the Town Council, also stopped by for some fun.

The event was a chance for Corte Madera to show off its small-town charm and one of its prime dining and shopping areas. Pumpkins grown in Corte Madera, just a short walk from the park, were on sale with benefits going to support local beautification projects.

Local merchants certainly didn't seem to mind the traffic. Neighbors just smiled and enjoyed the music even as their normally quiet streets were lined with parked cars.

Jana Haehl October 10, 2011 at 02:48 PM
Many thanks for the great coverage of our annual community celebration that raises funds for the Corte Madera Beautification Committee. The Larkspur-Corte Madera Patch always has all the local news about what's happening, where to go, and who's making a difference. Getting the link by e-mail each morning makes it so easy to read first thing, too. I'm encouraging everyone I know to get Patched in.
Phyllis Galanis October 11, 2011 at 12:56 AM
Thanks, Derek for covering our event so well. I know the Patch let more people know about our event and Wendy's great home-grown pumpkins that she so generously donates to the CMBC. The attendance was even greater than last year, and I saw a lot of parents and kids just enjoying themselves and the great food from our local vendors, and, of course the great beers. This year, we even had more for those, like me, who really prefer wine. Again, thanks so much for your coverage before and after our only fund-raising event: Oktoberfest.

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