Leavenworth can be frustrating for some people. On the one hand, its settlement in the North Cascades is absoutely breathtaking. If ever there was a hamlet that's aesthetically justified in its decision to immerse itself in the faux-Bavarian theme, it's Leavenworth. On the other hand, said faux-Bavarianness is so all-encompassing and uber-kitschy that it understandably drives a certain type of person absolutely batshit. If you're that type of person, you probably stay far, far away from Leavenworth come Oktoberfest time. I'm here to try and convince you to reconsider.
For starters, if you're going to go into the belly of the faux-Bavarian beast, it's definitely better to get completely wet then tool around gawking at figurines, bad art, sausages, and taffy all day. And there's no wetter faux-Bavarian experience than Oktoberfest, a tradition with gratuitous consumption of beer at its very core. This past weekend, I rented a house on the Wenatchee River with a bunch of friends and dove head first into the revelry. On the walk over, I expected overpriced booze and an obnoxiously claustrophobic collection of amateur drunks. But while there were more than a handful of Wazzu sweatshirts on display this past Saturday, the crowd was tame yet fun -- and the designer beers only set us back $4 per pint, which is about what I'd pay at a normal pub. But for a festival? Unbelievably reasonable. While the weather this coming weekend probably won't be anywhere close to as balmy as that which we experienced, I'd still highly recommend it. That or wait until next Oktober.