From beer tents to rides to performers, Oktoberfest is an energetic annual celebration both in Germany (of course) and throughout the U.S.. Although the original and largest Oktoberfest is held in Munich, Germany, that doesn’t mean that you have to go there to experience the same event. Oktoberfest celebrations are popping up everywhere around the country, allowing more and more people to participate in the fall festival that has been held since 1810. Here are Tripping.com’s seven best Oktoberfest celebrations in the Midwest.
Best Oktoberfest Events In The Midwest This Fall
Participate in a beer chug, listen to polka music, and see a comedy show at the St. Paul Oktoberfest. Play blow-up baseball and hockey or participate in a bed race to try to win money for your favorite charity. You can eat classic German food, including hot pretzels, sauerkraut, and bratwurst. Taste different beers and vote for you favorite brewery to win the “Best Fall Beer” award. The St. Paul Oktoberfest will be held in Rice Park from Friday, September 16th through Sunday, September 18th.
Expect this celebration to be huge since it’s the 35th anniversary! See a car show with 400 cars and eat food from over 100 different vendors. The Appleton Octoberfest is located on College Avenue in Appleton, Wisconsin. The festival is considered a block party since it takes over a one-mile stretch of the street. Octoberfest is on September 23rd and September 24th.
3. Amana, Iowa
Oktoberfest in Amana, Iowa includes a parade, a keg tapping ceremony, and horse and carriage rides. There are several games, including the Brat Eating, Keg Toss, and Log Sawing contests. The Amana Oktoberfest is being held from September 30th through October 2nd this year. Presale tickets are available online.
Located in downtown Lake Geneva, this Oktoberfest includes potato pancakes, pony rides, and a Giant Pumpkin Weigh-in. The Lake Geneva Oktoberfest will take place on October 8th and 9th. The event goes from 11am to 5pm.
Take a polka dance class at this Oktoberfest. Or test your strength in the tug-o-war competition and a beer barrel relay race. Have bratwursts and beer from local pubs and restaurants. There’s even a farm and craft market. This Michigan Oktoberfest is on September 24th, from 11am to 10pm.
Oaktoberfest in Oak Park, Illinoi has a variety of local food, craft beer, and live music. Listen to live music from Nikki Lane, The Band of Heathens, Motherfolk, and more. You can even bring your kids with you and take them to the Kids’ Root Beer Garden. Oaktoberfest is being held in Downtown Oak Park on September 16th and 17th at Marion Street and North Boulevard. Admission is free!
The Oshkosh Oktoberfest is located inside of a Bier Hall. Start practicing now for the Oshkosh Oktoberfest Olympics, which include a Frankfurter eating contest, Stein relay race, and a barrel-rolling contest. The Oshkosh Oktoberfest is on Saturday, October 1st at the corner of 6th and Oregon.
This article was written by Colleen Regan.