Annual Oxford Christmas Dinner

To celebrate the end of an eventful Oxonian year, the Munich Oxford Society again hosted its annual Christmas dinner in the Kaufmanns Casino. As for a number of years now, the attendance of over 80 Oxonians exceeded all expectations by the organisers. 

The main highlight of the evening was the presence of the new British Consul-General Simon Kendall, who congratulated the Munich Oxford Branch to being the largest Oxford Alumni Branch in Germany and spoke about the continued strong links between Britain and Germany despite Brexit.

If nothing else, the Christmas dinner at the Kaufmanns Casino was a great occasion to meet old and new friends and exchange stories of the shared time in Oxford. We are grateful for many well attended events in 2018 and thank all the organisers. We hope that 2019 will be another year in which our small society can thrive and flourish. Merry Christmas.

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Annual Oxford Autumn Hike

No real autumn without our traditional Oxford Alpine Excursion any longer – as every year a group of motivated Oxonian mountaineers gathered to enjoy a fabulous day in the Garmisch Alps. With lots of chatter in the air the crowed hiked up to the Stepbergalm through the misty forest. Even though the beautiful views of the Wetterstein Mountains were slightly limited through fog and mist, the group was fully rewarded by the delicious “Kaiserschmarrn” served at the Stepbergalm.

During the descend the hikers then even got spoilt with a change of weather providing a golden, blue-sky afternoon. What a wonderful day – we will do it again next year!

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O’ Zapft is! OUS Munich at the Octoberfest 

In late September, Munich’s Oxford University Society met in the magnificent Armbrustschützenzelt for its annual Octoberfest outing. Around 30 alumni, 10 freshers, and even a current faculty member gathered around four long tables to take part in Bavaria’s foremost cultural spectacle. Bavarian music, traditional dress, and beer abounded. The world famous folk fest lived up to its reputation. It was a great send off occasion for the freshers and an opportunity to share with them some anecdotal advice to help them on their way.  Special thanks to Alexander Sandkamp and Caroline Weimann from the Committee for their hard work putting the event together.
We look forward to next year.
Prost!
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An evening of Royal Song

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The Oxford Alumni Society had the big pleasure to enjoy some British flair from Windsor Castle in Munich again. Shortly after being prominently featured by the BBC during the weeding of Prince Harry and Meghan in St. George‘s Chapel at Windsor Castle, the Queen’s Six came back to Theatinerkirche on their 10thanniversary tour through Europe. From the front rows of a spectacularly crowded church, we could fully engage in a both captivating and sophisticated musical performance from their new album „Music of the Realm“. The pieces were interspersed with announcements giving enlightening background as to the history of the Ensemble and the chosen tunes. Each Q6 member had a say – all in perfect German and perfect British humour. The audience was delighted. The concert ended with enthusiastic applause and long queues to sign up for purchasing the Ensemble’s new album.
The evening was however long not finished. It was our honour to meet the Ensemble for traditional Bavarian dinner at the Bratwurstglöckl afterwards to jointly celebrate. The crowning finale was the spontaneous private performance of the Queens Six at the Bratwurstglöckl that will be kept in very fond memory by all Alumnis.
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Visit to the Exhibition „YOU ARE FAUST“

Unbenannt

The tragedy Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is one of the masterpieces of German literature. While first published in 1808 it still fascinates the modern reader with both it’s intriguing story and it’s stimulating intellectuality. The exhibition „YOU ARE FAUST“ at Kunsthalle München reflects on both the piece itself as well as on its influence on other artists since its publication. We very much enjoyed our tour through the exhibition as well as the discussions that followed during dinner at a traditional Bavarian restaurant.

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Oxford Weißwurstfrühstück 2018

For the 5th year in a row, and now officially as a tradition, the Munich Oxford Society has welcomed its members for the start of the new year with a “zünftig” Bavarian style Weißwurstfrühstück. This year, the gathering involved not only our friends from LSE, but for the first time also members of the Harvard Club.

Meeting in the Almchalet room at Donisl with view right onto Marienplatz, we were greeted with Pretzels, wheat beer and “white sausages” – which of course had to be consumed before noon. The rule dates back to the days when the lack of cooling facilities meant that the sausages would become spoilt quickly and the rule is still obeyed as of today.

After 3 hours of brunching and mingling, the kick-off event ended with the last guests being softly ushered outside and continuing their conversation on the busy Marienplatz – oblivious to the time whilst enjoying the company of their fellow alumni.

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Christmas Christmas Dinner 2017

On Monday December 4th, 80 Oxonians and their guests gathered in the beautiful rooms of the Kaufmann’s Casino (the Munich Merchants Club) to celebrate the annual Christmas Dinner of the Munich Oxford Society.

For the first time the dresscode was „black tie“ and as such it took a little while to recognize familiar faces in such festive wardrobe and Christmas cracker crowns. Add gowns and it would have been impossible to distinguish the event from an Oxford dining hall.

We were treated to a delicious meal consisting of duck with dumplings and Blaukraut followed by a Christmassy cinnamon pudding. Bonny Palm once again accompanied our attempts at Carol singing and we were blessed to have Ian Howard deliver the annual speech. Ian delighted us with insights into British culture, politics and of course news from the royal family all spiced up by some subtle British humor. Thank you Ian!

Our chairman Marco also addressed the society and reminded us of the essence of the Oxford Society: who needs „networks“, if there is a wonderful group of friends, who like to have fun, laugh and spend some quality time together. After dinner the bar was highly frequented and minced pies were at hand.

At last, a big thank you to Nils and Valentina for once again organizing the Christmas Dinner! Congratulations on the excellent evening! See you for the Weißwurst Frühstück in January!

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Oxford Alpine Excursion 2017

On a Sunday at the end of October 10 courageous, well-equipped hikers gathered at the foot of mount Wallberg (close to lake Tegernsee) braving rain and cold temperatures. And once again the theme “there is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong gear” payed fully off.

The crowd scaled the summit of mount Setzberg with lots of chatter in the air and was rewarded with some beautiful, mystic views onto the lake, crispy fresh air and even some first snowflakes at the peak.

After mastering the quite muddy last ascent to the top of mount Setzberg (with a few acrobatic slip-ups of several Oxonians) the group could warm-up in the freshly renovated mountain hut “Altes Wallberghaus”, enjoying some delicious hot goulash soup. Freshly energized the descent almost felt like a relaxed stroll.

When reaching the parking lot again after this wonderful hike, the proud mountaineers did not have to say good-bye immediately, but could conclude the day in a relaxed atmosphere with some cake and tea at the parents’ house of one of our fellow Oxonian close to lake Tegernsee.

Sun, rain or snow – we will do it again next year!

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Oktoberfest 2017

 

In annual tradition, the Oxford Alumni Society in Munich gathered again for its Oktoberfest celebrations. The Oktoberfest is predominantly known for its beer. And indeed, beer plays an important role: It is technically impossible not to have a mug of beer in your hands – not even for a few minutes. Why? Because people want to say cheers every few minutes, whenever the brass-band plays the toast “Ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit”. When this song is finished, all party guests count to three and then take a big sip. Of course, this ever-repeating procedure was also carried out this year. Some Oxonians started the evening with having a heated discussion about the upcoming general election in Germany. But intellectual discourse rarely lasts for long at the Oktoberfest. The later the evening, the more hilarious the evening: People standing on the beer benches, chanting their favourite songs about red balloons or cowboys and Indians.

But the Oxford Octoberfest is much more than that: It is the place where old friends celebrate reunion, and new friendships are made. It is the place where long forgotten Oxford stories are rediscovered. And it is the place where unexpected moments (almost necessarily) occur. I think it is not an accident that disproportionally many Oxford couples have met at the Oktoberfest. And this year? We don’t know yet, but we will be told next year at latest.

 

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Speaker Event with HRH Prince Luitpold of Bavaria

The alumni society’s first speaker event proved to be a great success. Kaufmanns Casino was packed with enthused Oxonians welcoming HRH Prince Luitpold of Bavaria as our expert speaker. The plethora of Bavaria’s finest brews he brought with him didn’t stifle the atmosphere either.

In his enlightening presentation, Prince Luitpold gave us an overview of the development of the craft of brewing in Bavaria and its close links to his family.

He immersed us in history, touching on milestones such as the Purity Law of 1516, the initiation of the world famous Oktoberfest as a wedding feast of King Ludwig I, and the wheat beer monopoly of Duke Maximilian I. Regarding the latter, he remarked (not without a twinkle in his eye) that it was the people’s thirst for wheat beer which secured national stability and Christianity in Bavaria.

As CEO of “König Ludwig International”, Prince Luitpold offered us first-hand insight into successful international brand management, which in his case is in over 10 markets.

Finally, his beer sommelier Artem Vynogradov guided us skilfully through a tasting of no less than six select beer specialities by “König Ludwig International”.

All in all, it was an indeed memorable evening!

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