Get ready for beers, beards, and lederhosen because Snowbird's Oktoberfest is about to commence. The tremendously popular German culture festival, which draws tens of thousands of visitors, runs every weekend from noon to 6:30 p.m., August 18 to October 21. While the beer is undoubtedly the undisputed king of the fest, its sidekicks -- food, live music, a craft market and on-mountain activities -- round out the family-friendly event.
The biergarten boasts more than 50 varieties of beer, including both traditional German-style brews and Utah suds from Moab Brewery, Bohemian, Uinta, and Squatters (creator of the Snowbird Dunkelweiss). Pair your beer with German favorites, such as bratwurst, weisswurst, sauerkraut, apple strudel, spaetzle, beef rouladen, pretzels, and Bavarian roasted almonds. For festivalgoers who fancy another type of bevvy, check out the wine garden and Jagermeister tent. Entrance into the festival is free, but to purchase any beer, a one-liter Snowbird Oktoberfest beer stein or mug is required and available for sale onsite. Of note: Save a few bucks by re-using an old mug from past festivals or peruse local thrift stores for the occasional Snowbird Oktoberfest mug find.
Every weekend of the festival will include live music from a number of traditional acts in the large food tent (see full schedule here) and, of course, the daily serenade (3:15 p.m.) of the Alphorns at the top of Hidden Peak. Don't forget to take advantage of the shopportunities at the festival's market, where more than 25 regional and local artisans sell crafts in the plaza. While the adults mix and mingle over libations, the kids can get their fill of favorite Snowbird summer activities, including climbing, ropes courses, the Woodward WreckTangle, alpine slide, and tubing.
Beard & Mustache Competition
Take your fancy facial hair out for a spin at the annual Beard & Mustache Competition, during the opening weekend of the festival. The Salty Saints Social Club will host the event, August 18 from noon to 2 p.m., with categories for every type and style of facial hair, including one for the ladies (whiskerina).
It's all in good fun and for a good cause, benefitting Wasatch Adaptive Sports, a non-profit that helps veterans, adults, and children with special needs get out there with adaptive recreation opportunities.
Bratwurst Eating Competition
No celebration of German culture would be complete without bratwurst. And while you can chow down on sausages any weekend of the festival, Saturday, August 25 is the chance to witness top-ranked Major League Eaters race to see who can down the most bratwurst in 10 minutes. The winner of the second annual Snowbird Bratwurst Eating Championship walks alway with $4,000 and bragging rights.
Think you can stuff your face with the best of them? Now's your chance to prove it because a few lucky locals are invited to take on the heavyweights for a shot at glory. Interested aspiring eaters can register here.
So what are you waiting for? Dust off those mugs and get up to Snowbird. Prost!