Dust off your lederhosen and get ready to celebrate all things German with a pair of Oktoberfest celebrations this weekend in the Black Hills.
What started off as a wedding festival in the early 1800s in Germany is now the world's largest folk festival that celebrates Bavarian culture and offers a variety of events, music and beer.
Historic Deadwood hosts its annual Oktoberfest Oct. 3-5. The festivities kick off Thursday with the annual PolkaFest at Deadwood Mountain Grand, featuring music by Just Jim & Tammy, and Julie Lee & The White Rose Band.
The Tour de Oktoberfest gets underway at 5 p.m. Friday. Visit locations throughout Deadwood's Main Street for games. Prizes will be awarded, including bar tabs and free rooms. Scorecards must be turned in by 9 p.m. to the Eagle Bar.
Many of the games have been featured in previous years, but changes are made to ensure they stay competitive.
“We want our events to be fun and different so we’ll switch them up to make sure one team or person doesn't dominate the competition,” said Amanda Kille, marketing and sponsorship director for the Deadwood Chamber.
Taste some of the finest German cuisines during the German Cook-off from 2-4 p.m. Chefs from various Deadwood businesses will feature samples of German-themed culinary creations. Awards for presentation, authenticity, over-all taste and people's choice will be awarded to the best dishes.
The famous Wiener Dog Races take place on Saturday on Main Street. Dachshunds will race through a course, and the winning dogs receive a trophy topped with a giant hot dog and other prizes. Registration is from 11 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. in front of Mustang Sally's. The races begin at 1 p.m. in front of the Historic Bullock Hotel. The event is open to all ages.
The 12th Annual Beer Barrel Games start at 3 p.m. in front of the Gold Dust Hotel. Teams will roll kegs, race with trays of full beer glasses, hammer nails, and hold beer steins in outstretched arms in a game of endurance. Registration begins at 2 p.m. Participants must be 21, but spectators of all ages are welcome.
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Open container is allowed all weekend from 5-10 p.m. For more information and a full schedule of events, visit DeadwoodOktoberfest.com.
Downtown Rapid City is hosting the ninth annual Bierborse festival Oct. 5 at Main Street Square. This event was the very first one held at Main Street Square.
Festivities kick off at noon with the Beer Stock Exchange. The price of beer will vary, depending on demand. Popular beers will see a spike in price, while the not-so-popular beers will crash.
“The idea for that came from an employee in-house. I’m going to be honest, I thought they were crazy. I never in a million years thought it would work, and it’s actually our most popular event,” said Dan Senftner, president and CEO of Main Street Square.
Brush up on your polka routine and dance to the musical stylings of the Polkanauts. This astronaut-themed polka band out of Denver, Colo., infuses metal, pop, and, surf into their music. They perform traditional German polka songs, as well as mixes by Slayer, Britney Spears and Led Zeppelin.
Attendees can participate in the stein holding competition, Keg Bowling and Life-Size Beer Pong. There will also be food vendors serving authentic German cuisine.
Two microbrew tents will be available for beer tasting. Passes are available for $35 before the event, and $40 the day of. Packages include unlimited tastings, a souvenir tasting glass, and a pretzel necklace. You must be at least 21 years old to enter the tents.
For more information and a full schedule of events, visit mainstreetsquarerc.com.