More than 650, 000 people are expected to head downtown Friday-Sunday for the annual celebration of German beer, food and music. If you’re going, are considering going, or have never been and want to know what to expect if you go, this guide is for you. (Yes, we cover all bases.)
Read on for seven essential things to know for Oktoberfest Zinzinnati weekend.
When And Where
Oktoberfest Zinzinnati will take place 5 p.m.-midnight Friday, 11 a.m.-midnight Saturday and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday. It’s held on Fifth Street, Downtown, between Vine and Sentinel streets.
Yes, that means several streets will be closed this weekend. These streets will close at 9 a.m. Friday:
- Fifth Street from Vine to Sentinel streets
- Walnut Street from Fourth to Sixth streets
- Main Street from Fourth to Sixth streets
- Sycamore Street from Fourth to Sixth streets
- Broadway Street from Fourth to Sixth streets
Metro will run bus service to Government Square only until 6:30 p.m. Friday; then Government Square will close.
Related: Navigating to and around Oktoberfest Zinzinnati 2015
The Chicken Dance
Former Bengals quarterback Ken Anderson, grand marshal for this year’s Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, will lead the Chicken Dance at 4:30 p.m. Saturday on Fountain Square. Anderson played quarterback with the Bengals from 1971-1986, including during the "Freezer Bowl" in 1982, the coldest game in NFL history. He was selected to four Pro Bowls (1975, 1976, 1981, 1982) and earned NFL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year awards in 1981.
Need to brush up on your Chicken Dance skills? Let last year’s grand marshals Nick and Drew Lachey show you how it’s done.
The Other Main Events
Opening ceremonies: Oktoberfest Zinzinnati’s official opening ceremonies, featuring a parade of German-American representatives wearing traditional attire, will take place at 11:30 a.m. Saturday on Fountain Square, with Sam Adams founder Jim Koch tapping the ceremonial first keg.
Sam Adams Stein Hoisting Championship: This contest, which requires competitors to raise a one-liter glass stein filled with Sam Adams OctoberFest for as long as possible, will take place 5 p.m. Saturday at Fountain Square.
Glier’s World Brat-Eating Championship: One of the top-ranked competitive eaters in the world, Joey Chestnut, will defend his title at 5 p.m. Sunday at Fifth and Broadway streets. He will attempt to break the world record he set in 2013 by eating 70 brats in 10 minutes. (Please, don't try that at home.)
So. Much. Food. And Beer!
There’s Entertainment Everywhere
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