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Chamber’s first Oktoberfest proves a hit

September 30, 2018

BULLHEAD CITY — Melody DuMouchel was asked to launch the inaugural Bullhead Area Chamber of Commerce Oktoberfest for 2017.

DuMouchel said that the notice she had for the event wasn’t enough to ensure a success, and it was put off until this Saturday.

The outcome of waiting a year?

“A full parking lot,” DuMouchel said. “Full tables, full vendors. I’m taken aback by how big it is.”

The event, which coincides with the “real” Oktoberfest in Munich, included the things one would expect — beer, pretzels, bratwurst and lederhosen — and some items that made it a family-friendly Bullhead City event.

At the Fatburger Kid Zone, children could get their faces painted, pet goats, rabbits, ducks, and cool off on a water slide, take in a puppet show and test their strength in a “bungee tug o’ war.”

The latter involved strapping a pack to one’s back, connecting to a bungee cord, and attempting to outrun an opponent and the tension in the cord, to be the first to grab a beanbag.

Food vendors offered a variety of treats, both Teutonic and domestic, including ribs, popcorn, shaved ice and chocolate.

Other vendors sold items that included jewelry, artwork, wind chimes, fossilized shark teeth and portraits drawn on the spot.

While the beer garden had four brews (two Oktoberfest beers and two domestics) on tap, Tish Todd had visitors to the Traveling Vineyard booth thinking of another libation. Traveling Vineyard arranges wine tastings in customers’ homes.

“We’re not pushing beer away,” she said. “We’re inviting other tastes. Someone who’s a beer drinker now may become a wine drinker at some point in time.”

Mary Dickinson of Fort Mohave said she found the event “totally happening.”

She said she enjoyed it as a venue for meeting new people.

“They have great choices in their beer selection,” Dickinson said.

Jacob Moon, 10, didn’t get any suds, but did score a pork-filled croissant.

“I don’t know what it’s called,” he said. “But it’s a sandwich.”

Jacob said his favorite activity was the bungee tug o’ war.

“I like that they pull you back,” he said. “You have to use all your muscle.”

Event sponsors included Anderson Ford of Bullhead City, Jenner’s Home Furnishings, Dot Foods, Inc., River Valley Air Conditioning, News West Publishing, Murphy Broadcasting, Perkins Family Restaurant, Baron Security Services, Hospice Compassus, Mohave State Bank and the Fort Mojave Indian Tribe.

“We couldn’t have done it without our sponsors,” DuMouchel said.

Volunteers included Key Club and Interact Club members from Mohave High School and Bullhead Chamber Ambassadors.

While the live music and fun was to continue well past sundown, DuMouchel had seen a pleasing amount of traffic by early afternoon.

“I honestly could cry a little bit, I’m so pleased with the turnout,” she said.

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