Oktoberfest

Category: Folk
Oktoberfest in Germany in 2022

About Oktoberfest

How long until Oktoberfest?
Oktoberfest .
Dates of Oktoberfest
2023 Germany Saturday, September 16thOktoberfest
2022 Germany Saturday, September 17thOktoberfest
2021 Germany Saturday, September 18thOktoberfest
2019 Germany Saturday, September 21stOktoberfest
Summary
Oktoberfest is held annually in Munich attracting over 5 million visitors each year.

You may have heard about Oktoberfest,but do you know what it is and how it started?

When is Oktoberfest?

Over five million people visit the Oktoberfest in Munich, consuming more than five million litres of beer and eat 440,000 chickens!

The festival itself is held in a series of massive beer tents which are surrounded by stalls and amusements, but how did it all start?

The Wiesn - from a wedding to the largest public festival in the world!

It all began with the wedding of the Bavarian crown prince Ludwig (later known as King Ludwig I) to Princess Therese from Saxony-Hildburghausen (hence the name of the Theresienwiese or Therese’s green) on October 12, 1810.

A cabman called Franz Baumgartner suggested celebrating the marriage with a horse race organized by the National Guard to ensure that the Bavarian folk could also partake in the wedding celebration. Much to everyone's delight, free beer and snacks were provided.

It was decided that the festival should be repeated at the same time the following year, combined with a livestock show. (Every three years this "central agricultural festival" takes place on the southern part of the Theresienwiese.) This marked the birth of the “October-Festivals”. By 1830, 60,000 people were enjoying Oktoberfest festivities in 19 beer tents and an annual tradition had been firmly established.

As Munich was considerably smaller in the past, the proprietors and event organizers went out to the Wiesn for the starting ceremonies. This tradition is still reflected today with the entry of the tent proprietors on Saturday morning in the parade.

The mayor Thomas Wimmer first started the well-known tradition of tapping the beer keg in the 1950s. The mayor taps the first keg on the first Wiesn-Saturday at exactly 12:00pm and calls out “O’zapft is’!” (which means the keg has been tapped). Since then, the mayor has always tapped the first keg.

But the Wiesn also has its dark side: 13 visitors were killed in a bomb attack at the main entrance in 1980 and over 200 were seriously injured. The Wiesn has been cancelled a total of 24 times in its history. The reasons were: war, cholera and inflation.

Find out more

Similar Observances

Read more about April Fools Day

April Fools Day 🤪

Find out the dates, history and traditions of April Fools Day

Read More
Read more about Walpurgis Night

Walpurgis Night

In parts of Northern and Eastern Europe, the Mass of Saint Walburga or Walpurgis Night is celebrated on the evening of April 30th.

Read More
Explore more Folk holidays

Other Observances on September 17th 2022

Read more about World Cleanup Day

World Cleanup Day

World Cleanup Day is a civic movement, uniting 180 countries and millions of people across the world to clean up the planet. In one day.

Read More
Read more about Day of People's Unity

Day of People's Unity

Find out the dates, history and traditions of the Day of People's Unity in Belarus.

Read More
Read more about Teachers Day

Teachers Day

Find out the dates, history and traditions of Teachers Day

Read More
Read more about International Red Panda Day

International Red Panda Day

Find out the dates, history and traditions of International Red Panda Day

Read More
All events on September 17th 2022