It’s Oktoberfest season, and you know what that means – it’s time to don your lederhosen and raise your beer mugs high! Oktoberfest is a beloved tradition that hails from Germany but has found a welcoming home in the United States. Whether you’re a beer connoisseur, a pretzel lover, or simply someone who enjoys exploring new cultures, Oktoberfest has something for everyone. And the best part? You don’t have to cross the Atlantic to join in on the fun. In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the best places to celebrate Oktoberfest 2023 in all 50 states, allowing you to enjoy this fantastic festival without leaving the U.S.
What is Oktoberfest and Why is it Celebrated?
Oktoberfest is an annual festival with its roots in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. Traditionally celebrated from September through October, this grand celebration has a fascinating history. It all began on October 12, 1810, when Kronprinz Ludwig (later King Ludwig I of Bavaria) married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen in Munich. The people of Bavaria were invited to join in on the festivities, and from this union, Oktoberfest was born.
While beer may be the star of the show in many American celebrations, it’s essential to know that in Germany, Oktoberfest is about much more than just beer. In fact, it’s not even considered a beer festival there; it’s a traditional folk festival for the entire family. From parades to carnival rides, live music to delectable Bavarian cuisine, the spirit of Oktoberfest is about fostering gemütlichkeit—cordiality and camaraderie.
Related: Awesome Things to Do and See in All 50 States
Plan Your Perfect Oktoberfest Outing
Are you ready to immerse yourself in the vibrant world of Oktoberfest without traveling to Germany? We’ve got you covered with a printable list of the Best Places to Celebrate Oktoberfest in All 50 States. Let’s take a look at a few highlights to get your Oktoberfest journey started.
1. New York – Hofbräu Bierhaus NYC
If you’re in the Big Apple, make your way to Hofbräu Bierhaus NYC, a Bavarian-style beer hall. Here, you can experience a wide selection of beers and indulge in authentic cuisine. It’s the perfect place to raise a toast with your friends or family.
2. Connecticut – Two Roads Brewing Company, Stratford
Two Roads Brewing Company in Stratford, Connecticut, is a favorite of both my husband and me. This brewery offers a variety of craft beers that will delight any beer enthusiast. The relaxed atmosphere and excellent company make it a must-visit during the Oktoberfest season.
Even if you’re on a Hawaiian vacation, you can still join in the Oktoberfest festivities.
- Wurstfest, Honolulu – Head over to Wurstfest in Honolulu and celebrate Oktoberfest Hawaiian-style with brats, beers, and live music. It’s a unique experience you won’t want to miss.
- Hawaii – Beer Lab HI, Honolulu – For a more local touch, explore Beer Lab HI in Honolulu. This brewery serves up unique craft beers and provides a relaxed atmosphere for your Oktoberfest celebration.
- Oktoberfest at MBC Kihei, Kihei – Enjoy Maui Brewing Company’s Oktoberfest celebration at MBC Kihei. They offer special beer releases and mouthwatering food, making it an ideal spot to soak in the Oktoberfest spirit while in Hawaii.
This list has something for everyone, no matter which state you call home. You can plan weekend road trips using this list, exploring different Oktoberfest celebrations and enjoying the diverse experiences each state offers.
Related: An Afternoon in Cooperstown, NY at Ommegang Brewery
Who Should Attend Oktoberfest?
Oktoberfest is a celebration for all, and there’s a place for everyone at the table. Here’s who should attend:
1. Beer Lovers: If you’re passionate about craft beers, Oktoberfest is the ultimate playground for your taste buds. With a wide range of brews to sample, you’re sure to find your next favorite.
2. Pretzel Lovers: Oktoberfest wouldn’t be complete without those soft, salty pretzels. Indulge in these delectable snacks that pair perfectly with your beer.
3. Culture Enthusiasts: If you appreciate learning about new cultures and traditions, Oktoberfest is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich heritage of Germany and Bavaria.
4. German Culture Enthusiasts: For those who have a deep appreciation for German culture, Oktoberfest is the ideal place to celebrate all things German, from the cuisine to the music and traditions.
5. Date Night or Girls’ Day Out: Oktoberfest isn’t just for solo travelers. It’s a fantastic idea for a date night or a fun day out with friends. The lively atmosphere, food, and music make it a great place for socializing.
6. Family-Friendly Celebrations: Some Oktoberfest celebrations are family-friendly, so you can bring your kids along for the fun. From carnival rides to games and entertainment, there’s something for everyone in the family.
With the Best Places to Celebrate Oktoberfest in All 50 States, you can plan an incredible journey through diverse celebrations and share the gemütlichkeit spirit with people from all walks of life. So, whether you’re enjoying the festivities in New York, Connecticut, Hawaii, or any other state, remember to raise your beer mugs, savor the traditional food, and immerse yourself in the cheerful and heartwarming atmosphere of Oktoberfest 2023!
Related: The Ultimate Guide to Finding the Best Pumpkin Patches in All 50 States