Expect to see both polka dancing and muscle flexing at this weekend’s Nederland Oktoberfest, which combines two Nederland traditions: the Bavarian celebration and Miners’ Days, the latter of which has taken place in the town since the late 1800s.
With the exception of when the competition took a break World War II, "Miners’ Days is the longest consistently run athletic event in the history of Nederland,” says festival organizer Rob Quinn. “I personally am not a miner dude, but I’ve got to tell you, there’s a little beefcake appeal here. These Nederland ladies love watching the guys go after it in the miners’ competition.”
After the fine demonstration of athleticism during the wood-splitting and bone-saw competitions, the day will transition into more of a party, with jam bands entertaining the eclectic town. “We’ll start the day with traditional polka, bringing a lot of older residents and retirees into the festival,” Quinn says. “Once everybody gets a little warmed up, we’re going to throw down with two really good jam bands in the afternoon.”
Nederland Oktoberfest takes place from noon to 6 p.m. September 19 and 20 at Guercio Field, 200 East Street in Nederland. The event is free and family-friendly. For more information on the entertainment or to register for the Miners’ Days competitions, visit nederlandoktoberfest.com.
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