Organizers again cancel Germany’s Oktoberfest due to COVID-19

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May 3 (UPI) — Germany’s world famous festival Oktoberfest has been wiped off the schedule for the second straight year due to concerns about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Organizers on Monday agreed to cancel this year’s event, which was scheduled for September. The decision was made by Bavarian Premier Markus Soeder and Munich Lord Mayor Dieter Reiter.

The main festival was scheduled to run in Munich and Bavaria from Sept. 18 through Oct. 3.

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Millions each year have attended the renowned festival in the past.

“First, the situation is too uncertain,” Soeder said, according to Oktoberfest.de. “We have an economic obligation here — a later cancellation of the Oktoberfest would be an economic loss.”

Soeder also cited potential damage to the Oktoberfest brand, and said imposing mandatory masks and physical distancing just wouldn’t be practical for the event.

“It wasn’t an easy decision, but I have to make it now and I have done so.” Reiter said, according to the Oktoberfest website. He added that the decision came down to health over fun.

“That’s why there will be no [Oktoberfest] in Munich this year either — for the 26th time in total.”

Organizers canceled the 2020 event, which combines a beer festival with a traveling fair, almost exactly one year ago.

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