Grab a beer! Oktoberfest is here!
Host an amazing Oktoberfest party. Check out these ideas for invitations, decorations and activities, as well as a list of Oktoberfest beers and traditional menu ideas.
Sending great invitations can make your guests feel special before the party even starts. You can either make your own Oktoberfest invitations or send pre-made cards. Here are some ideas:
Oktoberfest Invitations from Celebrate Express
German Flag Invitations — Write your party information on small German flags. Roll them up and send them in mailing tubes or padded envelopes. For a fun extra touch, add some beer mug confetti before mailing your invitations.
German Toast Invitations — “Oans, zwoa, drei, gsuffa!” One, two, three, drink up! This is the well-known Oktoberfest toast. Why not use it as your invitation headline. Then on the inside of your invite, challenge your guests to come up with their own toast to share during the party.
Personalized Oktoberfest Invitations — Shindigz.com offers a great selection of personalized Oktoberfest invitations featuring flags, crests, and beer steins. Visit their site to create an invitation unique to your event.
You might make the most of the great early fall weather by hosting your Oktoberfest party outside. Whether inside or out, creating the look of a German themed beer tent can be a great start towards decorating for an Oktoberfest party theme.
Color Theme — The two traditional color themes for Oktoberfest are cobalt blue and white (the traditional colors of the state of Bavaria) or black, red and gold (the colors of the German flag). Use either one of these in your tableware, balloons, and streamers for an authentic Oktoberfest atmosphere.
Set Up a Beer Tent — If your party is outside, consider renting a beer tent to house the festivities. If you will be indoors, drape crepe paper streamers from the ceiling to simulate the look of a party tent.
Designate a Dance Area — Chicken dance anyone? Whether you want some traditional oompah band music, polka hits, or you’d like to make things more modern with some popular German rock bands such as Nena or Silbermond, every Oktoberfest party should have an area set aside for dancing.
Provide Lots of Seating and Decorated Tables — Eating and drinking are the main activities during Oktoberfest. Be sure your party has enough tables for everyone to be seated comfortably when taking a dance break. Here are some ideas to make your tables extra festive:
- Use themed Oktoberfest tablecovers to protect from beer spillage.
- Anchor bouquets of balloons in your party colors with fun beer stein balloon holders.
- Alpine hatsmake fun table accents that your guests can wear around the party. Better yet, turned on their side they can be used to hold pretzels and other snacks.
- Use blue and silver Oktoberfest mug beads as napkin rings that can double as a fun party souvenir.
- If you are using red, gold and black as your color theme, use some fall gourds, pumpkins and leaves as table accents.
Decorate with Kegs — Traditionally in Munich, wooden barrels and kegs are covered in flowers and used as decorations. If you are serving beer in kegs at your party, wrap them with ribbons and stick in some artificial flowers to become part of your decor.
Here are some more ideas that are great for an Oktoberfest party:
Oktoberfest Party Supplies
Oktoberfest Decorating Kit
Oktoberfest Party Activities
Great food, drink and music are the key ingredients to a successful Oktoberfest party. Here are some more suggestions to give your event some oompah!
Have a Beer Tasting — Set out a selection of different Oktoberfest beers for your guests to taste. For each beer, put out a place card out with its name, origin, and any other trivia you may know. Put a comment sheet by each beer so that people can vote for their favorite. At the end of the party, give one beer the title of “Year’s Best Oktoberfest Brew.”
Get Everyone Up and Moving — After serving everyone a few beers, pick up the tempo of the music and get everyone involved. You can pass out party kazoos for your guests to accompany the music, or better yet, play the traditional Chicken Dance and encourage active participation!
Have a Costume Contest — On your invitations, encourage your guests to come dressed in their finest traditional German attire. That could be anything from lederhosen (leather shorts with suspenders) for the guys to dirndl dresses for the gals. Here are some ideas (including funny plastic vests your might give out to those who forgot their costume).
Inga from Sweden Wig
Oktoberfest Hat and Vest
Plastic Fraulein Vests
Oktoberfest Mug Beads
Here is a list of some great traditional German Oktoberfest foods to serve at your party. If you want to go all out, check out Allrecipes.com for a list of their top 20 Oktoberfest recipes.
- Crusty Breads
- Spicy Mustards
- Bavarian Cheeses
- Black Forest Ham
- Soft Pretzels
- Potato Salad
- Apple Strudel
- Black Forest Cake
In Germany, brewers create their own special Oktoberfest beers called maizen. No matter where you are, you can find lots of great beer options that become available in early fall. Here is a list of some of the most well-known and highly rated options: Ein prosit! (a Toast)
- Sam Adams Oktoberfest
- St. Pauli Girl
- Paulaner Oktoberfest
- Becks Oktoberfest
- Hacker Pschoor Oktoberfest
- Spaten Oktoberfest
** For the non-beer drinkers at your event, some other options might include reisling wine or Jagermeister.
Hope you’ve found some helpful Oktoberfest party ideas on this page. Enjoy the party!
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