It seemed cruel last year that we couldn’t enjoy the cool, cold air together while sipping beers, gnawing on giant pretzels, and enduring polka music.
Thankfully, this year’s Oktoberfests harvest isn’t that puny, and the fact that they’re all outside is welcome news in this risky public health era. Some started last weekend or even late August when many of us were still in a summer mood. But there are many more in the works.
Here’s a sample of these family-friendly fall events, many of which are free (see this link for Haunted Houses and Corn Mazes). Be sure to mask yourself and check at each event to see if they require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test for entry.
Denver’s 51st Oktoberfest promises better music production, shorter lineups and transparent payment for its line of Cutwater foods, beers, seltzer and cocktails this year. While it doesn’t feature the tongue-in-cheek 5K of years gone by, it does feature bowling, market, stein lifting, over 30 boards, and long dog (Dachshund) races. The party continues Friday September 24th and Sunday September 26th along Larimer Street between Market and Lawrence Streets, and 21st Street between 20th and 22nd Streets. Bracelets cost between $ 15 and $ 65. denveroktoberfest.com
Longmont Oktoberfest takes over Roosevelt Park on Saturday, September 25, with, as it should be, a hearty presentation from local producer Left Hand Brewing, as well as 10 other breweries, distilleries and cider houses. German-themed drinks, food and festivities – including best-dressed contests, stein-holding and bratwurst – complete the mix of rock, bluegrass and other genres on the live music scene. Admission is $ 10 to $ 35. lhbfoundation.org/longmont-oktoberfest
Colorado Springs Oktoberfest takes place September 24-26 at the Western Museum of Mining and Industry with traditional food and drink, live bands, ever popular weiner dog races, retail vendors and stein accommodation contests and the best costumes. Admission is free, but tickets are required for the beer school, schnapps school, and wine tastings. Parking at $ 10. csoktoberfest.com
Greeley’s Oktobrewfest is a treat for fans of Colorado breweries, distilleries and more. The September 24-25 event in downtown Greeley’s Lincoln Park will feature a dozen unlimited local drinks, polka and jazz music and dancers, as well as a children’s area on Saturday, September 25 with inflatables, bubbles and pumpkin and face painting. Admission is free, and a VIP tent (which has sold each of the nine years it is offered) will feature special beers, a tasting contest, and food for $ 40 per ticket. greeleydowntown.com and evenbrite.com
Estes Park Fall Gold Festival is yet another reason to visit this beautiful city at the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park, and the timing usually means fewer out-of-state tourists. Known as a festival of beer, kids and bands, Autumn Gold, September 25-26 at Bond Park, features live music, a vintage car show, kids’ activities, and free shuttles to the show. Rails in the Rockies model trains through town. Free entry. estesparkautumngold.com
Brecktoberfest helps bring the skiing and tourist destination of Breckenridge to the winter months, September 24-26, along Main Street. The paid event costs $ 50 per person, per three-hour session, at the Riverwalker Center. The cost includes a half-liter mug, two drink tickets and access to shows, Bavarian food vendors and German hammer games. However, no reservations or tickets are necessary to visit the free Fall Family Fair, which takes place daily from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Creative Arts District. breckenridgeoktoberfest.com
In addition to these biggies, there are upcoming Oktoberfests The Veta and Berthoud (October 2) and Montrose (October 9) – although events in Pueblo, Durango, Ouray and other cities appear to have been canceled for 2021.
Subscribe to our weekly newsletter, In The Know, to get entertainment news straight to your inbox.