CAMBRIDGE — Crabtoberfest is exactly what it sounds like: Maryland blue crabs with a side of German beer and Bavarian folk music played by lederhosen-laden men.
But Crabtoberfest’s mission goes far beyond that. Since 2005, the event has been manifesting German cultural competence in Dorchester County’s youth through a partnership with residents of Dueren County in Germany.
All the funds raised during the event, hosted by the Dorchester–Dueren Sister County Partnership Committee on Saturday, Oct. 5, at Sailwinds Park in Cambridge, are set to go toward providing intercultural experiences to Dorchester youth.
Lynn Hutchinson, co-chair of the Dorchester–Dueren Sister County Partnership Committee, said Crabtoberfest is a fundraiser that allows her organization to host German exchange students and send Dorchester high school students to Germany.
According to Crabtoberfest’s website, “More than 200 students have traveled between Dorchester and Dueren counties as part of this program.”
“The students involved in these exchange trips are very much aware of our economy’s global nature,” the website reads. “It is hoped that this opportunity will allow for a more collaborative relationship between nations in the future.”
Hutchinson called the relationship between German culture and Dorchester County culture a “marriage.”
”We serve crabs, and we try to meld the two cultures,” she said. “It’s just a great way to bring our two cultures together and celebrate, and also raise money for all of the good things we do.”
This year, Crabtoberfest offered three kegs of imported German beer, traditional German food and attire, as well as dancing and live music performances.
Performances began with Liab’ und Schneide and moved through Eastern Shore Dance Academy and Tisza, a Hungarian dance group.
Hutchinson said she hopes the Dorchester–Dueren Sister County Partnership Committee’s work continues to grow — allowing more students, here and in Dueren County, the opportunity to seek global education and understanding.
“We want it not only to be a fun celebration for everybody, but we’d love for our organization to expand and allow more kids to have that experience of traveling,” she said. “Because kids who might not otherwise get to go could have that experience.”
For more information about the Dorchester-Dueren Sister County Partnership, contact the Dorchester Chamber of Commerce at 410-228-3575 or by email at email@example.com.