Beer Prudence (and the Rest of Us, Too) 

When October rolls around, some people begin preparing their Halloween costumes and others even start making their plans for the more wintry holidays. The rest of us revel in the fall weather and find any excuse to drink some beer. St. Mary's Oktoberfest at St. Mary's Church (598 East Third Street, Alton, Illinois) is for those of us with brews on the brain. At this weekend-long party -- held from 6 to 11 p.m. Friday, 1 to 11 p.m. Saturday and noon to 10 p.m. Sunday (October 8 through 10) -- bands play, sausage and sauerkraut are eaten, and, yes, beer steins are clinked together before beers are gulped. In fact, after the official keg-tapping ceremony at 1 p.m. on Saturday, beers will be served up for free until the keg runs dry. Free beer! If you can concentrate after learning that last tidbit -- free beer! -- it's also important to note that Polka Connection plays from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, adding to the celebratory vibe and bringing a little bit of Munich closer to home. To see the full band schedule and to check out what's happening at the fest for the little ones, visit www.stmarysoktoberfest.com. Admission is free, but beers, food and auction items will cost you extra.
Oct. 8-10, 2010

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