New Arena Attractions & Biergartens Among Highlights of 6th-annual Oktoberfest at SteelStacks
BETHLEHEM, PA–Axe-wielding lumberjacks, captivating fringe festival acts and an elimination-style ice sculpting competition are among the many new highlights guests can enjoy for free when they attend the 6th-annual Oktoberfest at SteelStacks this fall. The 2016 event, set for Sept. 30-Oct. 2 and Oct. 7-9, even features a nod to the one and only David Hasselhoff, beloved by Germans everywhere, as it presents the first Hasselhoff-Off competition Oct. 7, 8 p.m.
At Oktoberfest 2016, the place to gather for all the action is the event’s new Oktoberfest Arena, featuring bleacher seating and packed with fun family shows and entertaining attractions. On Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, attendees can witness the chainsaw-carving, wood-chopping might of the Great Lakes Timber Show. These talented lumberjacks, who have appeared at fairs and festivals throughout the Eastern U.S., will delight the crowds as they showcase their precision and strength in carving, axe throwing, crosscut sawing, log rolling and more.
On the evening of Oct. 1, it’s time to ‘Freak Out’ as the Allentown Freak Out Fringe Festival brings some its favorite acts to SteelStacks for “Freak Out! Oktoberfest.” From the amazing belly dancing and feather dancing of the Gas House dance troupe, to nail-bed walking and straightjacket escapes from The Unholy Sideshow, this evening of jaw-dropping performances is sure to delight the crowds. It’s all highlighted by an 8 p.m. show by the Lehigh Valley’s only fire performance troupe, The Burning Hearts Fire & Light Theater, a group of highly skilled performers that dazzles with fire hoops, staves, poi and more.
Highlighting the attractions on Oktoberfest’s second weekend is the new Oktoberfest Ice Carving Competition. Presented by Sculpted Ice Works, this elimination-style event on Oct. 8 features ice carvers from throughout the Mid-Atlantic Region competing for cash prizes and the glory that can only come with being named the last carver standing. Each round of the competition features a new theme, with carvers having 30 minutes or less to showcase their creativity while constructing theme-based sculptures using chainsaws, picks and blowtorches. Oktoberfest attendees are invited to watch all the action live while cheering on their favorites.
On Oct. 7, it’s a tribute to “The Hoff” as Oktoberfest presents the inaugural Hasselhoff-Off. During this fun-filled event, competitors run in slow-motion to the “Baywatch” theme song, show off their Hoff-like good looks in a costume and impersonation contest, talk to a car and take part in a simulated beach rescue. Plus, they’ll sing karaoke songs in German, all while competing for a Hoff-inspired prize pack that includes, among other things, a pair of red swim trunks.
This year’s Oktoberfest also features the widest selection of beer in the event’s history, led by Yuengling, the official beer of SteelStacks. New this year are three biergartens featuring beers by D.G. Yuengling & Son, Sam Adams Brewery, Weyerbacher Brewing Company and more. Each biergarten features its own unique theme and entertainment, with guests greeted by the welcoming sounds of alphorn players, the festival’s new Oktoberfest Oompah House Band, or fun games like bean bags and masskrugstemmen. Plus, the Brewers of Pennsylvania’s Brewers’ Village return for its third year Sept. 30-Oct. 1 and Oct. 7-8.
Other Oktoberfest highlights include new German Shepherd Agility Demonstrations by Cole’s K-9 Center of Bath on Oct. 8, the Yuengling Oktoberfest 5K on Oct. 2, the 99.9 Hawk Ultimate Bingo Bash on Oct.9 and the return of the popular dachshund races on Oct. 2 and 9 at 3 p.m. Individuals who want to enter their dogs in this year’s dachshund races can register online at www.steelstacks.org/oktoberfest. Entry fee is $15 and prizes will be awarded to the first-, second- and third-place finishers in both races. The Yuengling Oktoberfest 5K, which gets underway at 10:30 a.m. on Oct. 2, includes a free race photo and official race tech shirt for all participants, as well as and one complimentary Yuengling Oktoberfest beer for ages 21 and older. Information on entry fees and the official entry form are available at www.oktoberfestrace.com.
Now in its 6th year, Oktoberfest is a free festival that features German food, beer and live music, as well as attractions such as dachshund races, the Great Lakes Timber Show and more. Festival hours are Fridays, 5-10 p.m.; Saturdays, noon-10 p.m.; and Sundays, noon-8 p.m. Partners helping to make the free event possible include D.G. Yuengling & Son, as well as Adams Outdoor Advertising, All-Star Distributing Inc., Banko Beverage Company, Guinness, Sam Adams Brewery, Service Electric Cable TV & Communications, Uber, Weyerbacher Brewing Company and 99.9 The Hawk. For more information, visit www.steelstacks.org/oktoberfest.
OKTOBERFEST ARENA SCHEDULE
The Great Lakes Timber Show
Sept. 30, 7:30-9 p.m.
Oct. 1, 12:30-2 and 3-4:30 p.m.
Freak Out! Oktoberfest
Presented by Allentown Freak Out Fringe Festival
Oct. 1, 7-9 p.m.
Oktoberfest Dachshund Races
Oct. 2 and Oct. 9, 3 p.m.
Oct. 7, 8-10 p.m.
German Shepard & Dog Agility Demos
Presented by Cole’s K-9 Center
Oct. 8, 1-4 p.m.
Oktoberfest Ice Carving Competition
Presented by Sculpted Ice Works
Oct. 8, 6-9 p.m.