Drink, dance, and eat like the Germans at Oktoberfest 2016 in the charming riverfront community of Frankenmuth, MI. Dubbed “Little Bavaria,” Frankenmuth is a festive town that knows how to take fun seriously. This is made apparent to the almost 10,000 attendees who enjoy the long beer-infused weekend that takes place here annually.
History of the Festival
Originally created in 1810 to celebrate the marriage of Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese, Oktoberfest continues in Munich today and is one of the largest festivals in the world. If a trip to Germany isn’t in your future, luckily you can still take part in this German tradition at Frankenmuth Oktoberfest in Heritage Park.
Frankenmuth Oktoberfest began in 1990 and was the first Oktoberfest to be sanctioned by the original Oktoberfest in Munich. The annual festival recreates the tradition as closely as possible to the original, even aligning the event to coincide with the Munich Oktoberfest in Germany. The sight of attendees in their best Bavarian attire and the sounds of yodeling, German polka, and cowbells successfully transform the Harvey Kern Pavilion in Heritage Park into a festive replica of Munich.
Things to Do
At the Frankenmuth Oktoberfest there are plenty of ways to celebrate the heritage and culture of the festival’s birthplace. You can dance to German music, sample various German foods, and of course, drink authentic Hofbrauhaus Oktoberfest beer, the official beer sponsor of the event. Live music is provided along with a variety of other entertainment options, and vendors supply you with a selection of souvenirs to commemorate this historic festival.
Wiener Dog Races
One event you’re not going to want to miss is the remarkable wiener dog races. Watch as 100 wiener dogs compete for the top prize of fastest dachshund. Ten dogs run at a time and the top ten dogs race for the first place title. For an equally adorable event, the festival also hosts a parade of wieners, with trophies given to the best dressed wiener, the smallest wiener, and the fattest wiener. At the parade you can also see the king and queen of the wieners dressed in traditional German attire. The wiener dog races take place on Saturday, September 17th with a $10 admission fee.
So put on your dirndl dresses and lederhosen and come out to Frankenmuth’s 27th annual Oktoberfest for a fun weekend of German beer, music, and cuisine.
Frankenmuth Oktoberfest 2016 will be held Thursday September 15, starting at 3:00pm and closing at 10:00pm. On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday the event opens at noon, closing Friday and Saturday at midnight. The festival comes to a close Sunday at 6:00pm. Tickets for the Frankenmuth Oktoberfest can be purchased at the gate. Shuttle service is available for a small fee and will be running continuously.