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Helen's most famous festival is perhaps the six-week-long Oktoberfest that takes place from mid-September through October. Oktoberfest started out small in the 70s but has grown by word of mouth, and it's claim as the biggest party in the Southeast has rung true for many years. The festival celebrates Helen's (slight) German heritage at the Chamber of Commerce's Festhalle with zillions of invited bands, Polka and chicken, German beer, and wursts and sauerkraut. The weather and natural scenery seem to step it up a notch for the celebration--it's one of the prettiest times of year.
Helen finds much else to celebrate. There's a hot air balloon race in June each year, as well as a Winefest in May at the
Habersham Winery and the Volksmarch--a Bavarian walk through the forests around Helen--the third weekend in April. Christmastime brings more celebration in Helen--from Thanksgiving to the holidays, celebrate with the Alpenfest--as does the Fourth of July. In the summer, there's also the Bavarian Nights of Summer, which runs from mid-June through September, where Bavarian bands beg you to oompah and Polka every Saturday night at the Festhalle. And if you like Bingo or Trout fishing, Helen's got something for you--Bingo weekly in the summer, and the Trout Tournament at the end of March.