Aside from the beers and brats, Oktoberfest signifies a special time of the year when communities come together to ring in the fall season. So, enjoy the German festivities with the company of loved ones by celebrating Oktoberfest in Wisconsin this autumn.
New Glarus Oktoberfest
Come dressed in your best dirndls and lederhosen when visiting America’s Little Switzerland this fall. During Oktoberfest, Downtown New Glarus comes alive with authentic German food, the best local beer and a ton of family-friendly entertainment. Beginning on Thursday, Sept. 22, and lasting through Sunday, Sept. 25, you’ll find live music, local New Glarus beer and horse-drawn wagon rides throughout the fairgrounds. Be sure to stop by the petting zoo before attending the celebratory tapping of the famous wooden keg of New Glarus Staghorn Octoberfest. The weekend can be topped off on Sunday afternoon with fondue tastings, food booths and kid-friendly activities. Experience a true Wisconsin Oktoberfest in New Glarus, as both the town and the brewery are local gems. For more information, visit swisstown.com.
Lake Geneva Oktoberfest
As authentic as any celebration you’d see in Germany itself, Lake Geneva puts on a Oktoberfest in Wisconsin like no other. Visit Lake Geneva Oktoberfest on Saturday, Oct. 9, to take in German cuisine, an authentic craft faire and a traditional biergarten. Surrounded by colorful fall foliage, this festival will get you into the autumn spirit with a fun-filled weekend of Oktoberfest merriment for the entire family. Young ones and those still young at heart can enjoy bounce houses, pony rides and baby bunnies. And if you can appreciate a good pint, you can check out one of the many beer tents before seeing an adorably competitive dachshund race. If you’ve been waiting all year long for the return of apple cider doughnuts, then you will be in heaven because local vendors will be serving up these sugary delights alongside gourmet brats, potato pancakes and roasted corn. For more information, visit bidevents.wixsite.com.
Oktoberfest USA is now notorious for its pretzels, polka and pints of beer, but it was once a small community gathering. Since then, it has evolved into the longest-running Oktoberfest in the Midwest. Visit La Crosse on the last weekend of September to help usher in the fall season with this massive celebration. Beginning on Thursday, Sept. 29, the carnival kicks off the festivities with plenty of fair food and fun rides. Then there’s the beer. Craft Beer Night is a signature event at Oktoberfest USA. Here, craft breweries gather to give out samples of their best beers. And once you pick the perfect pint, be sure to attend the torchlight parade for a luminescent evening. After the first night, you will want to stay the entire weekend to fully experience what Oktoberfest in Wisconsin is really all about. So be sure to join in this German festival, complete with lederhosen games, celebratory fireworks and live music. For more information, visit oktoberfestusa.com.
Hay Daze Oktoberfest
The more the merrier! Historic Downtown Greendale is bringing fall fun for the entire family to its quaint charming town square all day long on Saturday, Sept. 24. The kids can participate in Halloween activities like pumpkin bowling, hay rides, pony rides and more. Meanwhile, the adult-friendly side of Oktoberfest obviously includes a variety of delicious food vendors, live music and a traditional Oktoberfest biergarten featuring the beloved Explorium craft beer on tap. At the same time, you’ll be tempted to explore the small business scene while celebrating in the downtown area. With over 25 unique shops, boutiques, restaurants and cafes, there is plenty to see and do at this fall festival. For more information, visit greendale.org.
Milwaukee’s Original Oktoberfest
Home to some of the best brewers, Milwaukee is the place to be for Oktoberfest in Wisconsin. The Bavarian Bierhaus takes Milwaukee’s appreciation for a good beer festival to another level with German-inspired get-togethers throughout the entire month of September. Come in for an evening–or several–to sample authentic beers, taste German and Bavarian cuisine and listen to live music. And the Bavarian Bierhaus bar menu is like nothing you’ve ever seen before, including batches of Dunkelweizen, a banana bread-inspired brew, and specialty cocktails like Munich Mules and Schonauer Candy Apples. However, traditional tastes may steal the show. Featured dishes, like jumbo pretzels, beer cheese soup, pierogies and Jäger mushroom gravy-topped schnitzel, are sure to leave you feeling fulfilled. For more information, visit thebavarianbierhaus.com.
Oktoberfest Chippewa Falls
If you’re looking to experience traditional German activities like stein-holding, sauerkraut-eating and keg-rolling, be sure to visit Oktoberfest Chippewa Falls for a weekend of culture and craft brews. At noon on Friday, Sept. 16, a grand introduction at the famous Leinenkugel Grounds sets off the weekend’s festivities in style. From there, you can take advantage of four stages with more than 30 performers, an array of authentic dishes and more than enough dancing opportunities. Or surround yourself with culture by attending a German dumpling-making demonstration. No matter what you decide to do, you don’t want to miss out on the fun at the largest fall attraction in Chippewa Falls. For more information, visit gochippewacounty.com.
Brew Ha Ha
Fall in love with fall surrounded by cute shops in adorable Downtown Baraboo, home to beautiful foliage and majestic bluffs. Take to the town on Friday, Sept. 23, for a 21-and-older beer-tasting tour and shopping extravaganza. This historic downtown is welcoming visitors to take a 12-stop tour of the participating shops, all pouring up tasty brews to celebrate Oktoberfest in Wisconsin. There will be plenty of variety when it comes to shopping and drinking. You can browse all kinds of products while sipping on a new sample of beer at each location. Every storefront has featured a different craft brewery, each with its own signature beer. There will also be plenty of delectable snacks and live music to liven up the downtown atmosphere. So bring plenty of pals for an evening of beer-fueled shopping. After all, it’s never too early for a little Christmas shopping. Brew Ha Ha tickets are $30. For more information, visit downtownbaraboo.com.