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St. Benedict Oktoberfest Begins Festing this Friday

Dust off your dirndls and lederhosen it’s time for giant pretzels, wiener schnitzel, and of course beer.

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The original Oktoberfest is in Munich, Germany. It’s 16-18 days of fun and considered the world’s largest Volksfest (beer festival and travelling funfair). Traditionally it runs the last two weeks of September leading to the first Sunday in October. One possible origin of the festival date back to October of 1810 when the country was invited to a party thrown to celebrate the marriage of Kronprinz Ludwig, later King Ludwig I (reign: 1825–1848), to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. This information was gathered from Wikipedia and there is some debate about the exact origins of the festival. What isn’t debatable is that the festival took off and has been repeated (except during WWII) ever since.

Our local Oktoberfest is put on by St. Benedict at the St. Benedict Catholic Church N. Sheppard Street and last 3 days with activities kicking off this Friday at 4 PM.

Non-liquid consumption options include what you’d expect for a German Festival. You’ll find bratwurst, knockwurst, weisswurst, sauerkraut, German Potato Salad, wiener schnitzel, and just a plain hot dog for the little ones but it sounds fancy when called a kinderdog.

When it comes to your liquid consumption the focus is beer. Lots and lots of beer. I’ve been to beer festivals with less options. There will be 53 different beers to select. Begin your beer planning by checking out the full list here.

Only official St. Benedict Oktoberfest tickets are accepted for food and drinks at the event. The main ticket booths can be found at the Belmont entrances of Oktoberfest (at Grove, Hanover, and Stuart Avenues), and a small kiosk is located between the Weingarten and the main food tent. The other non-food/drink vendors in the Christkindlmarkt, with the exception of our Oktoberfest Kaufhaus and Lebkuchenherzen booths, will not accept Oktoberfest tickets.

In my excitement about the beer I almost forgot about the second best part of Oktoberfest, the bands. You’ll be able to get down to the chicken dance to your heart’s content. Traditional polka and oompah band will also be entertaining the masses throughout the fest.

Lastly, don’t forget to train your biceps for stein holding contests. See ya at the Fest.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride set to take place as virtual event, with registration now open for participants

Participants can complete their virtual ride anytime between August 15-August 31.

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The 2020 Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride, originally scheduled for August 15, will take place as a virtual event, with registration now open at www.sportsbackers.org. Once registered, participants can complete their virtual ride anytime between August 15-August 31. Distance options for the virtual ride include three-mile, eight-mile, and 28-mile categories, and the $20 registration fee includes an event t-shirt, bicycle light set, downloadable bib number, virtual goodie bag, and a registration packet shipped directly to participants, among other items.

The Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride has grown into one of Richmond’s favorite cycling events, and 2020 marks the12th year of the ride. The virtual event encourages riders and families to explore their neighborhoods and communities in a celebration of biking and active living while adhering to current health and safety guidelines. Sports Backers will provide mapping tools and links to assist participants in creating their own unique routes to allow a personalized experience to the virtual event.

The continued support of Virginia Credit Union helps make the 2020 virtual event possible, and this will be the third year the Richmond-based financial cooperative has served as title sponsor of the event. Partnering with Sports Backers for the event helps Virginia Credit Union bring their goals of both financial and physical health together for people in the Richmond community.

“We look forward to the Moonlight Ride every year, and though this year’s event experience will be different, we know it will be a great opportunity for participants to get out and get active, and we’re happy to support that,” said Glenn Birch, Virginia Credit Union’s Director of Public and Media Relations. “Our members believe in strengthening our community and we know Sports Backers shares that belief and events like the Moonlight Ride help make it a reality.”

The virtual Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride will again feature costume and bike light decoration contests for participants, with prizes available to winners in both categories. Participants can post their photos to the event Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/moonlightride/) and winners will be notified after August 31. Contest details can be found on the Sports Backers website (https://www.sportsbackers.org/events/moonlight-ride/costume-tacky-light-contest/).

“Biking in the Richmond region continues to grow in importance for fitness, recreation, and transportation, and in the past few months it’s become increasingly popular as an exercise outlet thanks to the physical and mental benefits it provides,” said Meghan Keogh, Event Director of the Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride. “We hope this year’s virtual event is another way for people of all ages and experience levels to enjoy getting on their bike and celebrating our active community, even if we can’t all be together at the same time.”

The official event charity for the Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride is Bike Walk RVA, an advocacy program committed to making the Richmond area more bike and pedestrian friendly. Bike Walk RVA advocates for comfortable and connected places to bike and walk for people of all ages and abilities. Protected bike lanes, paved shared-use paths, safe intersections, and calm neighborhood streets have been proven to get people biking and walking on a regular basis and are an important part of healthy and vibrant communities. Participants who make a $20 donation to Bike Walk RVA will receive a $5 discount on their virtual Virginia Credit Union Moonlight Ride registration.

For registration and more event details, please visit www.sportsbackers.org.

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Juneteenth Events Around Richmond

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Emancipation Day celebration in Richmond, Virginia, ca. 1905. Photo Credit: VCU Libraries / Public domain

Juneteenth is now an official Virginia holiday celebrated on the 19th of June in the United States to commemorate Union army general Gordon Granger’s reading of federal orders in the city of Galveston, Texas, on 19 June 1865, proclaiming that all enslaved persons in the U.S. state of Texas were now free.

Technically it’s not official but Governor Northam introduced legislation on Tuesday to make it an official paid state holiday and it has received bipartisan support.

“It’s time we elevate this,” Northam said. “It finally shut the door on the enslavement of African American people and while it did not end racism, black oppression or violence, it is an important symbol. By commemorating it, we push people to think about the significance of Juneteenth.”

Local Events

 “Self Preservation,” Friday, June 19th, Noon to 1 PM. Online discussion of the Virginia African-American Cultural Resources Task Force to promote increased focus on the African-American experience in Virginia. Task force chair and Richmond Delegate Delores L. McQuinn; Norfolk State University professor Colita Nichols Fairfax, chair of the Virginia Board of Historic Resources and president of the Barrett-Peake Heritage Foundation in Hampton; and preservationist Niya Bates, board member of the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center in Charlottesville, will lead the conversation with moderator Justin E. Reid of Virginia Humanities. Online access: bit.ly/2UBDmB9.

Elegba Folklore Society is preparing an incredible JUNETEENTH virtual FREEDOM CELEBRATION!

A drum call opening @djembe_drum_official.

Live set from @samreed124 and so much more!
Saturday June 20th
YOUTUBE @elegbafolkloresoc
FACEBOOK @elegba.folklore

“Juneteenth Rally for Justice” – Saturday, June 20, 1 to 5 p.m. Virginia Union University, Hovey Field.

The public is welcome, but the event primarily is for members of black fraternities and sororities to craft policies for police reform, according to F.W. “Fred” Scott, president of the Virginia Association of Chapters of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. To include remarks and dialogue with U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, U.S. Rep. A. Donald McEachin, Richmond Delegate Jeff M. Bourne and other elected officials.

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Photos: 5,000 Man March

Thousands took the streets on Saturday to march for racial equality and police reform.

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The images above were taken by Richard Hayes and the images below were taken by Suzanne Velasco.

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