Every time we drive into Waunakee, we pass an old Texaco gas station.
Today was the second biggest festival of the year in Waunakee- Wauktoberfest. A local brewery annually sponsors it, a very Wisconsin gathering to celebrate beer.
We made sure to get there at 12 for the most important event of the day- the time-honored Blessing of the Beer. The pastor began with some quotes from Martin Luther.
Of course, there was a beer-tasting, for only $25.
My favorite part was the petting zoo. It's there year-round, but is actually only just goats, adults and kids. They come up and eagerly lick your hands. And then try to take a nip out of your hands and eat your hands-free.
There were a number of contests, though they couldn't find enough people to join the hotdog eating contest. (I thought about it, but having to eat 30 hotdogs in five minutes sounded profoundly unappetizing.) I was really excited to hear about the sheepshead contest, thinking it would be something like what occurs in Morocco, but sadly learn it was not an eating contest, but merely some sort of card game. The beerstein-carrying contest required contestants to carry six pitchers without spilling anything. But the pitchers were water, which kind of defeats the purpose.
Another contest involved dachshund races. During the beerstein carrying contest one of the dachshunds found something greatly more appetizing than thirty hotdogs- the remnants of a chicken, attached to an official Wauktoberfest hat.
When I imagined Wauktoberfest, I thought immediately of my most prominent experience with polka- The Gay Old Polka from Groundhog Day. While there wasn't quite the central communal gathering, there was certainly a lot of polka. Scarily enough, my dad turns to me and says that he knows the words to all the songs they were playing. Evidently the polka songs have words.
Hot dogs were only $1.50, but they looked at me with a strange mix of horror when I asked where the mayonnaise was for the hot dogs. That's just not done here in Wisconsin.
Grilling hot dogs appears to be hard work. Even before any hot dogs have been put on the grill.
You've heard of the Children of the Corn? Meet the Child of the Pumpkins.