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"Bubbling with fun, Alpenfest 2001"
Living in a tourism-based community, we've come to live with the fudgies and sight-seers that wander through our city during the summer months, but no matter how much we try, nothing can quite prepare us for the mother of all attractions that overtakes Gaylord during the third week of July as Alpenfest comes around...
The Alpenfest tradition began many, many years ago as a celebration by the Swiss for conquering Northern Michigan. They sailed across the mighty Atlantic Ocean on their mightier ships to the Eastern Coast of the United States of America. This wasn't good enough land for them, seeing as the British and the French had already been exploiting the area for some time, so they proceeded to hike many miles until they finally found themselves smack dab in the middle of nowhere. "Good enough," a very famous Swiss man proclaimed, and Gaylord was founded. There really wasn't much of a confrontation, mainly because pine trees and raccoons generally don't put up a fight unless they feel threatened, and just between us, we don't think they really realized what was happening at the time anyways...
"Generations from now, the people from this area will actually think that they're somehow related to the Swiss over in Europe, even though their only true connection is the fact that a Swiss city just happens to sit on the other side of the world, directly across from this place," they commented. The Swiss explorers then gathered in a circle to plan what to do next.
"Let's get sloppy drunk, to the point where we all become incredibly obnoxious," one suggested.
"I like what he said, but let's do it for an entire week, so that we can inconvenience as many people as humanly possible!" another added.
And so it became official, and the third week of July became known as Alpenfest, an entire week set aside for anyone and everyone to dress up in funny costumes, purchase overly-priced knick-knacks from shady vendors and spend their evenings getting really wasted with each other - as a community.
Normally we at Just Laugh try to avoid the Alpenfest as much as possible, but we're going to try something a little different this year. Instead of leaving town for the week, we're going to actually experience all the wonder and joy that Alpenfest has to offer, and if that's not enough, we're going to be passing some of that joy on to you, our readers! We'll be posting updates everyday as the festival progresses, so check back often to make sure that you get the full Alpine Experience!
"We've got to put up with it for a week, and now so do you..."
By the way, if anyone has any photos, stories, or other Alpenfest-related information to share, feel free to send it to us:
See you on the Strasse!
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