How to Celebrate OktoberFest in NYC!
Watermark Ocktoberfest - Photo Courtesy of Watermark
From September 17th through the first weekend in October, NYC will raise an overflowing beer-filled stein (think the biggest pint you have ever seen) to Oktoberfest. The Bavarian celebration is one of the largest in the world outside of Germany, and will feature some of the best new beers in NYC as well as traditional favorites and of course plenty of delicious German food. Enjoy the slowly cooling weather while guzzling brews at some of the best beer gardens in NYC or check out the annual German-American Parade, which culminates in a massive Octoberfest celebration in Central Park.
Oktoberfest is a traditional autumnal festival, which originated in Germany, that is celebrated all over the United States by drinking copious amounts of beer, sporting lederhosen, munching on pretzels, and doing some polka dancing along with general merrymaking. Given it’s name, it makes sense the first Oktoberfest was held on October 12–17 in 1810 to honor the Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig’s marriage to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. Supposedly, the celebration date was changed to the third week in September in the U.S. due to cold-weather concerns.
Oktoberfest NYC celebrations will take place in all five boroughs in NYC at various venues. The largest events include Oktoberfest in Central Park (Sept 17), Munich on the East River (Sept 23) and Watermark’s Oktoberfest (Sept 17 – Oct 2). However, even the Met’s will raise a glass to the holiday, and on Friday September 23rd before their game they will offer fans an “Oktoberfest at Citifield” pre-game with beer, pretzels, and extended hours of merrymaking before the first pitch. And, not to be left out, Brooklyn will have celebrations across the river at Radegast Hall & Biergarten in Williamsburg (Sept 17 – Oct 1)
Central Park (Rumsey Playfield)
Saturday - September 17th, 1:30pm
After The 59th Annual German-American Steuben Parade which will march up 5th Avenue from 68th to 86th street on Saturday, September 12th from noon to 1pm, celebrations will begin in Central Park. Ocktoberfest & the German Steuben Parade"
Enjoy a pitcher
or two and great entertainment featuring “Spitze!”, the Polka Brothers and many other bands, as well as the 8th annual National Masskrugstemmen Championship sponsored by Hofbrau Bier." (from the event website)
24-20 FDR Drive Service Road East - Zum Schneider Tent (21st Street & East River)
Saturday & Sunday - September 17th - October 2nd - 5pm
$25 - $100
Bavarian bier haus Zum Schneider brings Oktoberfest to the East River, where “a German-speaking staff—outfitted in lederhosen—serves liter steins of Oktoberfest brews while a slew of snack stands hawk cotton candy, gingerbread and brezel. There will be live music provided by Mösl Franzi and the JaJaJa's as well as special guests throughout the event. DJ Volka Racho will keep the haus rocking between sets.” (from the event website)
Watermark Bar at Pier 15 at 78 South Street (Financial District)
Saturday & Sunday – September 17th - 25th & October 1st & 2nd - 12pm-Midnight - FREE - $60 for Bier flights and tastings
There’s lots of reasons to love Oktoberfest…the steins of beer, the tents, the lederhosen, the pretzels. “If you’re not traveling to Munich this year, you could have missed out on three of the best weeks of your life – until now. Over 3 weekends, you can experience everything that makes Oktoberfest great. We’ll have live music, full Oktoberfest decoration and fun games for the entire family. Along with steins, you’ll get some of the best Oktoberfest food that New York has to offer.And while you eat, be sure to enjoy the amazing views of New York at our 3,500 square foot venue featuring the Brooklyn and Williamsburg bridges and Brooklyn skyline.” (from the bar website)
Radergast Hall, 113 N. 3rd Street (Williamsburg)
FREE admission, pay for any food and drinks
Every day between September 17th and October 1st This Brooklyn beer tavern kick-starts the Oktoberfest celebrations on Saturday September 17th with a pig roast, live music from polka bands, mug-holding competitions and celebratory keg tappings and three kegs flown in from Germany. You can order bratwurst and kraut from Radegast all year round, but there will be a special Oktoberfest themed menu available from September 17th through the end of October.