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Let's Party Alt-School 

So of course we know what's great about October (autumn radiance) and beer (tastiness), but probably fewer of us are attuned to the appeal of Alton, Illinois, a stout old river town drowsing atop the bluffs overlooking the chooglin' Mississippi. Combine these three components and you have Alton Oktoberfest, happening Friday through Sunday (October 9 through 11) on the grounds of St. Mary's Catholic Church (519 East Fourth Street, Alton, Illinois; 618-465-4284). Oktoberfest is free to the public Friday from 7 to 11 p.m., Saturday from 1 to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. Naturally, there'll be a river of delicious beers on tap — Paulaner! Warsteiner! Boulevard! — and in cans — uh, Coors and Miller — plus plenty of hearty food, bands and other entertainment. To learn more go to www.stmarysoktoberfest.com.
Oct. 9-11, 2009

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