In times of the corona pandemic many large and small events are cancelled. Many Oktoberfest fans therefore ask whether the Oktoberfest 2020 can take place at all this year.
The annual Oktoberfest, the world’s largest beer festival, is unlikely to take place this year due to the coronavirus crisis, the premier of the southern German state of Bavaria said on Thursday.
This is what Wiesn boss Clemens Baumgärtner, head of the department for work and economy, says.
Wiesn 2020: Decision by June at the latest
“The question moves us all, of course. Of course, as the organizer of the Wiesn, together with all our partners, I would like to see that there is no need to cancel. Therefore, we want to monitor the situation until the last possible moment before an irreversible decision is made. That will be in June at the latest,” says Baumgärtner. “That is why we are continuing to plan the Wiesn as usual. However, it is still too early for a binding assessment today.”
Baumgärtner continues: “Of course the decision will be made with the greatest possible responsibility. In the end, it will largely depend on what the medical experts advise and what health policy and safety regulations will be issued by the federal government and the Free State.”
The Oktoberfest attracts around six million visitors to Munich every year, with many traveling from abroad. Revelers sit together on long communal tables to swig beer, eat sausages, pretzel or pork knuckle, and listen to oompah bands.
The German government and regional state governors agreed on Wednesday to start relaxing some of the lockdown rules introduced last month to stem the spread of the coronavirus, but said big events would stay banned until Aug. 31.
UPDATE: Munich’s famed Oktoberfest folk and beer festival is being canceled this year, the latest major event to fall victim to the coronavirus outbreak.
“We agreed that the risk is simply too great,” Bavarian Premier Markus Soeder said at a news conference Tuesday.
Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter said the event — this year due to take place between Sept. 19 and Oct. 4 — brings in around 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion) for local businesses and that hotels, restaurants and taxi drivers would especially suffer.
Schwere Entscheidung mit Münchens OB Dieter Reiter: Das Oktoberfest 2020 muss ausfallen. Das Risiko ist einfach zu hoch. Man kann dort weder Abstand halten noch Mundschutz tragen. Mit Corona zu leben, heißt vorsichtig zu leben, bis es Impfstoff oder Medikamente gibt. #wiesn pic.twitter.com/AMHpQAjIL0
— Markus Söder (@Markus_Soeder) April 21, 2020