03/28/2008 02:45 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Oktoberfest Opens In Munich

Munich's mayor joyously hammered a tap into Oktoberfest's first barrel of beer, opening the annual drinking spree Saturday with the traditional cry of "It's tapped!"

Thousands of visitors crowded into the sprawling Theresienwiese festival grounds as Mayor Christian Ude launched the 174th Oktoberfest and passed the first beer to Bavarian Governor Edmund Stoiber. A 12-gun salute signaled that it was time to start serving the public.

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