The Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest kicked off officially with the ceremonial keg-tapping on Friday.

Hundreds gathered in Carl Zehr Square to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the event.

The opening ceremony signified the welcoming of nine days of festivities at different venues around Kitchener-Waterloo.

“You meet up with friends you haven’t seen for a year, you catch up on their lives, they catch up on what’s happening with you—I think that’s what it’s all about,” said Oktoberfest president Margo Jones.

K-W Oktoberfest began in 1967 before being adopted by the Chamber of Commerce two years later.

Keg-tapping celebrations were held in Cambridge and Waterloo, respectively, the two days prior.