The tradition of Oktoberfest may have started in Germany, but the celebration quickly took root in the United States and has now become a staple in many states. If you’re looking to find the best festivals across the country, there are some you certainly won’t want to miss.
From Michigan to Oregon, these German-inspired celebrations have become something worth traveling for. If you’re a huge fan of Oktoberfest, here are some of the best festivals across the country that you should add to your bucket list.
Dangers of Having Too Much Fun at Oktoberfest
Before attending an Oktoberfest event, take all measures possible to stay safe. Although drinking before driving may seem harmless enough, driving under the influence can have serious repercussions that should always be treated seriously.
Alcohol-related driving charges can have devastating repercussions for both driving privileges and insurance premiums, lasting long after they occur. You may wonder how long does a DUI stay on your record — the answer is typically five to 10 years. So it’s best to avoid driving after drinking at these events.
You can opt for a designated driver or ride-sharing service to avoid getting behind the wheel. Once you have secured a safe ride, you can enjoy all the fun Oktoberfest has to offer.
Held in mid to late September each year, the Frankenmuth Oktoberfest has earned its notoriety for good reasons. Many may already be familiar with the town of Frankenmuth, as it is a popular Christmas destination.
Designed with Bavarian charm in mind, Frankenmuth can make its visitors feel like they have traveled to Europe rather than Michigan. Here you’ll find quaint shops and buildings mimicking German architecture lining the streets.
The town’s massive Oktoberfest celebration is a nod to their German inspiration, and they spare no expense to make the experience exciting for visitors. From a lengthy menu of traditional German cuisine to their original Hofbräu beer, you’ll feel like you stepped right into Bavaria at this festival.
The celebration also boasts 350 beers from around the world, live German music, and dancing. If you’re searching for a fun-filled Oktoberfest, Frankenmuth should be high on your list.
The city of Cincinnati may not have the German-inspired architecture of Frankenmuth, but they spare no expense for their Oktoberfest celebrations. Dubbed Oktoberfest Zincinnati, the event is the largest celebration in the U.S.
At this festival, you’ll find over 30 food vendors serving delicious dishes, over 120 beer options, and over 30 live performances to keep you entertained.
The fun doesn’t end there because Zincinnati Oktoberfest offers plenty of activities. The festival hosts events like the Gemütlichkeit Games, where contestants race a short distance with two fists full of beer steins. There is also a parade, bratwurst eating contest, and best-dressed contest you can participate in during your time at the festival.
If you’re looking for an action-packed Oktoberfest experience, this southeastern Ohio city won’t disappoint you.
Helen is another Bavarian-inspired town that tops the list for many reasons. Nestled within the Appalachian Mountains, the charming scenery may genuinely make you feel like you’ve wandered into a village in Germany.
Along with gorgeous views, Helen is also home to the longest-running Oktoberfest in the country. This month-long celebration has drawn crowds to northeast Georgia for the last 50 years.
Unlike many other Oktoberfests, Helen doesn’t only celebrate on weekends. You can attend this festival any day of the week from the end of September to the end of October.
The town is already home to many German restaurants, so you’ll find plenty of food options during your trip. There are also many beer selections, live music, and dancing, making Helen a must-see Oktoberfest destination.
The New England area may be well known for its spectacular leaf peeping during the fall, but the state of Vermont has another exciting event to offer. In Stowe, you’ll find the Trapp Family Lodge Oktoberfest.
Fans of The Sound of Music might already recognize the Von Trapp family from The Sound of Music; however, you might not realize they were real individuals who left Austria in early 1940 for Vermont because its rolling hills reminded them of home.
Now, the Trapp Family Lodge holds an Oktoberfest yearly to pay homage to the family’s roots. You’ll find delicious food, plenty of drinks, and even a Stein holding contest at this festival.
The beautiful New England scenery surrounding the stunning lodge makes all these fun activities even more enjoyable. If you’re searching for a unique Oktoberfest experience, you won’t want to miss the Von Trapp family’s celebration.
Mt. Angel, Oregon
Mt. Angel offers the ideal family-friendly festival in a Bavarian village setting: Oktoberfest meets traditional folk festivals for an experience unlike any other! Don’t miss Mt. Angel! Come experience its exciting blend of Germanic charm with family fun at its core.
Many activities and separate areas at Mt. Angel Oktoberfest are suitable for all ages. Whether you choose to check out the German Biergarten, filled with premium beers and plenty of German-style dancing, or opt for the Oktoberfest Kindergarten, complete with child-friendly shows and train rides, you can’t go wrong at this festival.
The best part of this event is that the proceeds are put back into the Mt. Angel community. Much of the profits will go toward the area’s schools, senior services, hospitals, and youth programs.
Between the welcoming atmosphere for people of all ages and the event’s charity, it’s hard to beat the Mt. Angel Oktoberfest celebration.
Enjoying Oktoberfest Across the Country
Oktoberfest celebrations continue to rise in popularity across America. If you are searching for some of the finest festivals across this vast continent, make your way down from Frankenmuth, Michigan all the way up to Mt Angel, Oregon for unforgettable experiences at one of these incredible Oktoberfests.
Just be sure to stay safe while enjoying the festivities. Avoid drinking and driving by securing a safe ride after the celebration. You don’t want to find yourself suffering the consequences of alcohol abuse.
Once you’ve got your ride situation figured out, you’re ready to enjoy all the fun and excitement of Oktoberfest.
Alexandra Arcand writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, Clearsurance.com. She is an Ohio native who enjoys finding new Oktoberfest celebrations near and far.