Island Oktoberfest, hosted by First Evangelical Lutheran Church and co-sponsored by Del Papa Distributing Company, is a FREE EVENT and will open Friday evening with themed-Bier Garten venues featuring a variety of both German and domestic brews as well as a variety of German-style wines.
Ceremonial Tapping of the Keg
On Friday at 5:00 p.m. Galveston Oktoberfest officially opens with brief introductions by the committee organizers and then FREE beer is passed out following the tapping of the keg containing imported German Bier!
For those who prefer wine, there will also be a Popping of the Cork!
Music is supplied by Die Tubameisters!
This event is held in the Courtyard between The Lyceum and First Lutheran Church.
Authentic German Food
In addition to great music and dancing, there will be superb food and drink! Our authentic German food will be provided by Bavaria Sausage in Madison, Wisconsin! Bavaria Sausage is an old world German Sausage maker founded by Fred Voll from Schweinfurt, Bavaria, Germany who is a Master Sausage Maker since 1962. The menu items include: Knackwurst, Red Lager Beer Brats, German Potato Salad, Kruegermann Sauerkraut, Hengstenberg Traditional Bulk Red Cabbage, and German Mustard! All recipes are mixed by hand from traditional all natural bulk spices & authentic seasonings just as they always have been! NO artificial coloring, flavoring, liquid smoke, fillers or MSG! For more info, visit: https://www.bavariasausage.com/
For a sweet finale, homemade Helga’s strudel (freshly baked on site), will be offered in addition to a variety of tempting home-made desserts – specially prepared by congregation members from recipes handed down from generation to generation. Hand-made pretzels, freshly-popped popcorn, and a variety of soft drinks will also be sold at the festival.
Arts & Crafts in the Lyceum
The historic and beautifully-renovated Historical Lyceum of Galveston will again be open from 5-9pm Friday evening and from 11am-7pm on Saturday with vendors showcasing exceptional hand-crafted arts, crafts, and gift items for those festival goers eager to get a head start on holiday shopping.
Because Oktoberfest continues to be one of the vendors’ most enjoyable and popular venues, regular attendees can look forward to shopping at their long-time favorite booths- each featuring Christmas and other special gift items. As well, shoppers always look forward to knowing that their favorite vendors have returned to showcase their best products.
The Cake Wheel
The ever popular Cake Wheel is a fun (and addictive!) game of chance to pick a lucky number and choose the cake of your choice to take home and enjoy!
All cakes are donated by the congregation of First Lutheran Church!
On Saturday, the silent auction will be from 11am until 5pm. Over 40 items are open for bid!! Check them out in the Gazebo located in the courtyard!
Chicken Dance Sponsored by THE KITCHEN CHICK!
On Saturday we will feature our annual Chicken Dance contest featuring Alicia, owner of The Kitchen Chick, as the emcee!
Costumes are encouraged!
Each couple/pair is encouraged to be creative and add their own original dance moves. Each couple/pair must be on the dance floor ready to compete before the music starts.
Volunteers from the crowd and event staff will select semi-finalists from each of the two categories.
The audience will judge the semifinalists. The winner from each category will be determined by the length/volume of applause from the audience.
On Saturday, Oktober 23rd at 11am is our KIDS ZONE located safely inside a fenced area!
This year we will feature 11 different fun activities: WARRIOR JUMP INFLATABLE, BASEBALL CHALLENGE, DUAL LANE JACOB’S LADDER, TOXIC MELTDOWN EXTREME, MECHANICAL BULL, ROCK WALL or Bungee Trampoline, DUAL LANE GIANT SLIDE, Bungee / Joust Combo, MOONWALK, and a GIANT CUP PONG GAME!
A $20 wristband will give you full access!
Also, we will have arts and crafts including Felt Kits for either a Halloween Hanger or a Thanksgiving Wreath, a Paper Parasol, and fan painting.
Homemade Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth
You won’t want to miss the sweets booths for a treat to enjoy at the festival or maybe to take home with you. Tempting arrays of homemade cakes, pies, cookies, candies, divinity, fudge, popcorn balls, caramel apples, cupcakes, homemade jellies, and jams, and much, much more!
Two Stages of Continuous Entertainment
We have a full lineup of music and dancing on two stages both days! Check out our entertainment schedule!
We have something for everyone! Please see our official Bier Menu!
Stein Holding contest
How long can you hold your stein? “Masskrugstemmen” is a Bavarian combo feat of STRENGTH and ENDURANCE where contestants hold a 1-liter stein of beer (about 5 lbs) out in front of them at shoulder level for as long as they can. NO beer spilling! NO elbow bending! Extended arms MUST be kept parallel to the ground! The ultimate winner keeps their stein aloft the longest. So gather round, strong ones, on SATURDAY at 6:30pm at the Merchandise Booth and let’s settle this ultimate contest at ISLAND OKTOBERFEST! TRIVIA FACT #1: The German word “masskrug” translates into a one-liter stein of beer, and “stemmen” means “lift.”, so therefore, Masskrugstemmen. TRIVIA FACT #2: The “average” person can hold it for about 4 minutes. TRIVIA FACT #3: The world record is 20 MINUTES, 13 SECONDS set in GERMANY.
…And Just Walk-about Free Fun!
Island Oktoberfest admission is free. Attendees are encouraged to dress in German costume. No animals will be allowed on the festival grounds. For more information, call 409.762.8477, or follow the event on Facebook at Island Oktoberfest. All proceeds benefit programs and outreach for First Lutheran Church in Galveston, including Feed Galveston and Fanfare! Lutheran Music Academy.
As always, thank you for drinking responsibly.