Oktoberfest in Lehigh Valley
German Food, Live Music, and Family Fun: In-person & Virtual Programming
September 26 & 27, 2020
The oom-pahs and bratwurst are back! Now in its 10th year, Oktoberfest presented by Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE) will be held September 26 & 27 at SteelStacks. Oktoberfest 2020 features "Outdoor Dining with a Show" experiences, authentic German food and beer, live music, as well as attractions like the popular (and very silly) dachshund races, a Virtual Oktoberfest 5k, and activities for kids like the Chalk the Walk coloring contest.
Outdoor Dining with a Show
Air Products Town Square at SteelStacks • Reservations Required
Two seating sessions both days from 11 a.m.–1 p.m. and from 2–4 p.m.
Listen to German-style music while enjoying a menu that features offerings like a loaded potato pancake covered in corned beef brisket, fried sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and Rueben-style dressing, and Schweinshaxe (roasted pork shank) served over browned butter spaetzle and cabbage. Finish it all off with apple strudel from Mattie’s Strudel Haus and ice cream from the Bethlehem Dairy Store. Live performances during the sessions on the Town Square's Highmark Blue Shield Community Stage feature:
- September 26: Schützengiggles Oompah Band, a traditional German brass oompah band, performs everything from standard German Oktoberfest tunes to pop covers
- September 27: Polkadelphia. Whether rocking out at the local biergarten or strolling through the bustling tents at an Oktoberfest, this band always brings the ‘haus’ down.
Seating is by reservation only with tables up to four people in the same party. Two seating sessions will be offered both days. Table reservations are $10; ArtsQuest Members can make reservations starting September 9 at 10 a.m., public reservations begin September 11 at 10 a.m. Guests must wear facemasks both indoors and outdoors unless eating and drinking and all CDC, state and city health & safety guidelines are in effect.
Visit the the four food vendors taking part in the “Oktoberfest To-Go” Food Service and Biergarten on PNC Plaza at SteelStacks to pick up food to-go like, Karl Ehmer, Heaven on a Bun, Waffle de Lys and Heidi’s Strudel & Island Expressions. Beverages including Yuengling Oktoberfest, Hofbräu and more will be available for guests to purchase to enjoy with their food if they opt to sit in the Biergarten.
Dragtoberfest – Sept. 26, 8:30 p.m. (in-person)
Tickets: $12/$10 students & seniors/$9.50 ArtsQuest Members
The Lehigh Valley's favorite drag queens are back for some fierce and socially-distanced performances at the base of the blast furnaces. Join Elektra Fearce St. James, Georgia Versace Couture and Clan Ann (Sharron Ann Husbands and Carol Ann Carol Ann) - who many of you might recognize as our Golden Girls Drag Show actors - for a night of great fun and faces. Purchase tickets.
Virtual Hasselhoff-off – Sept. 24, 8 p.m. (live via Zoom & Facebook Live)
No pandemic can dampen Germany's love for the greatest performer of all history, David Hasselhoff. We return for year five of finding the best Hoff in the land complete with the slow-motion virtual beach run!
Virtual Weiner Dog Parade – Sept. 27 (Live via Zoom and Facebook)
Everyone love the dachshunds at Oktoberfest. This year, these loveable dogs will strut their stuff in our virtual parade. Owners are encouraged to dress their dogs in costumes and create home videos to submit for judging. The judges will announce the ‘King and Queen’ via Zoom and Facebook live Sept. 27, 2 p.m. Registration cost is $25 ($22.50 for ArtsQuest Members); prizes will be awarded in different categories. Register here.
Oktoberfest Steinholding Competition (virtual & in-person; finals Sept. 27 at SteelStacks)
Contest registration is $40 and includes an official stein
The U.S. Steinholding Association and ArtsQuest are once again partnering on this competition where participants hold steins full of beer as long as they can at arm's length. Preliminaries will take place virtually via Zoom starting Sept. 16; Semi-finals are set for Sept. 26 at SteelStacks and the final competitors will battle it out at SteelStacks on Sept. 27. Winner takes home $250 and a berth in the U.S. Steinholding Association 2020 National Remote Steinholding Championship. Register now.
Sausage Sculpting Contest – Sept 27 at 6 p.m. (Live via Zoom and Facebook)
Contest registration: $10 per individual or family or $7.50 for ArtsQuest members
Turn your ‘wurst’ into the best piece of art at the inaugural Oktoberfest Sausage Sculpting Contest. The artwork reveal will take place live via Zoom and Facebook live Sept. 27 at 6 p.m. Competitors can register for the chance to impress the judges and win prizes from Dietz & Watson and Karl Ehmer. Sausage sculptors will have until the live broadcast to make their meat-art submissions. All sculptures must be child/family friendly and all registrants are expected to obtain their own ‘materials,’ which must primarily include a kind or multiple varieties of sausage. Register now.
Family Fun (in-person) – Sept 26
Including free art kits for kids, Check out the in-person workshop at the Banana Factory, which includes a free art kit for the kids, and a Chalk the Walk Coloring Contest on Sept 26, 2-5 p.m., at SteelStacks.