Back again for 2023, August 12th is the date for this year’s return of Utah’s biggest Bavarian bash; a marathon ten week festival that unfurls every weekend at Snowbird, this year wrapping on October 15th. The 2023 edition of the event follows last year’s landmark fiftieth party, after first being held way back in 1972. Modeled on the Munich original, the Utah feier runs every Saturday and Sunday, running noon through 6.00 p.m.
The annual festival includes a biergarten offering more than fifty beer varieties including several traditional German-styles. It goes without saying that local brewers will be attendance and this year will include popular names like Shades Brewing, Moab Brewery, Bohemian, Uinta and Squatters.
Food is naturally a big component of Oktoberfest and this year guests can expect to enjoy dishes such as bratwurst, weisswurst, sauerkraut, apple strudel, spaetzle, beef rouladen, pretzels and Bavarian roasted almonds. Food and beer are purchased ala carte with organizers stressing that points of sale are cashless this year; though reverse ATMs are available at no charge. Worth a bookmark is this handy map detailing all the food and drink locations.
Admission to the family-friendly Oktoberfest is free, though do note that parking is priced at $12 per car. Another option to consider for 2023 is the ‘free ride down’ service. Organizers write, “Hop in a Canyon Transportation van at the Oktoberfest Arch available every half hour starting from 3 pm until 8 pm. These vans will take you and your friends to a Park & Ride location of your choosing in Cottonwood Heights where it will be easier to order a rideshare service or have someone pick you up (Base of Little Cottonwood Canyon, Base of Big Cottonwood Canyon, Swamp Lot and 6200 S Park & Ride). These vans are limited capacity and first come first serve, but a great option when you’re in a pinch!”
Here’s a few tips from Snowbird, on how to get the most out of your trip this year:
- Have you been to Snowbird’s Oktoberfest before and already have a mug? Bring it! You can reuse any Snowbird Oktoberfest mug (even if it dates back to 1972) and get the refill price. Or, buy a new one (the design changes every year) and start or add to your collection. An important note however is that this only applies to Oktoberfest mugs – not Brewfest ones
- The Alphorns at The Summit are a must-see! They play at 3.00 p.m., so take the 2.00 p.m. or 2.30 p.m. Tram up. By going up early, you have time to grab a pretzel and another brew before the music starts. Make sure you finish your beer before your ride because alcohol is not allowed on the Tram.
- The games at the Oktoberfest Halle start at 3.50 p.m. Join in on the fun by participating in yodeling and polka contests or see if you can prove your strength and compete in the mug-holding competition
- A little-known secret is the beer tents on the Skier’s Bridge and Dick Bass Terrace. These tents usually aren’t as crowded, so you can grab a beer faster and make the most of your time at the festival
Main image credit, Snowbird.
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Hi, I’m Stuart, nice to meet you! I’m the founder, writer and wrangler at Gastronomic SLC; I’m also a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune. I’ve worked extensively with multiple local publications from Visit Salt Lake to Salt Lake Magazine, not least helped to consult on national TV shows.
I’m a multiple-award winning journalist and have covered the Utah dining scene for the better part of fifteen years. I’m largely fueled by a critical obsession with rice, alliteration and the use of big words I don’t understand. What they’re saying about me: “Not inaccurate”, “I thought he was older”, “I don’t share his feelings”. Want to know more? This is why I am the way I am.
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