Situated on the banks of the Ohio River, Cincinnati is the perfect location for planning a late summer Ohio excursion. The city’s distinct neighborhoods offer a spectrum of experiences, including the Over-the-Rhine District, which features unique architecture, breweries, and more. With can't miss attractions like Great American Ballpark and the Cincinnati Museum Center, it’s no mystery why the city was listed in Travel + Leisure’s Best Places to Travel in 2017.
Oktoberfest Zinzinnati is one of the biggest Oktoberfest celebrations in America with hundreds of thousands of annual attendees, and it will take place September 15-17, in Downtown Cincinnati. Patrons will have the opportunity to try more than 200 different food items including Oktoberfest favorites like brats, sauerkraut, soft pretzels, strudel, and more. Those over 21 will be able to sample more than 100 different varieties of beer available at nine beer gardens. The event also features some fun games including beer barrel rolling, wiener dog races, and stein races, and those looking for some more serious competition will love the World Brat Eating Championship and Sam Adams Stein Hoist. Don’t miss out on the World's Largest Chicken Dance, which will include tens of thousands of people trying for a new record (old record is 48,000, set here in 1994). ResortsandLodges.com got the chance to interview Rich Walburg, Communications Director for the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber, to learn more about this massive celebration.
RAL: How long has the event been running?
RW: This will mark the 42nd Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, presented by Sam Adams.
RAL: How many annual participants do you draw?
RW: We expect 650,000 to attend the 2017 Oktoberfest Zinzinnati in downtown Cincinnati.
RAL: What demographic does your event attract? Children? Families? Couples?
RW: Oktoberfest Zinzinnati attracts everyone from everywhere. All are welcome!
RAL: What makes this event unique?
RW: In its 42nd year, Oktoberfest Zinzinnati is the largest Oktoberfest celebration in the nation, with more than 200 menu items, nearly 100 beer varieties, and nine biergartens and fest tents!
RAL: Take me through the activities of a day at the event.
RW: Oktoberfest Zinzinnati kicks off each year with wiener dog races, beer barrel rolling, and stein races. Throughout the weekend, Oktoberfest Zinzinnati offers the World Brat Eating Championship, the Sam Adams Stein Hoist and the World’s Largest Chicken Dance.
RAL: Will there be any guest appearances?
RW: We have yet to announce our 2017 Oktoberfest Zinzinnati Grand Marshal. In the past, the Grand Marshal has included Star Trek’s George Takei, Nick and Drew Lachey, and Weird Al Yankovic.
RAL: What dining options will attendees encounter?
RW: Each year we go through least 225,000 bratwurst, mett-wurst and sausages, 23,000 soft pretzels, 4,000 sauerkraut balls, 24,500 potato pancakes, 1,900 pounds of German potato salad, 16,000 strudel, and 3,600 pounds of sauerkraut.
RAL: Tell me about the atmosphere.
RW: Oktoberfest Zinzinnati offers a fun and music-filled the downtown atmosphere with a vibe that that is unmistakably Cincinnati!
RAL: Are there any lodging specials that are set up specifically for the event?
RW: Please check CincinnatiUSA.com for hotel packages.
RAL: Does this drive business to your local economy?
RW: Oktoberfest Zinzinnati grows the economic prosperity of our region, welcoming guests from around the nation and the world.
RAL: Does the event support a particular cause in the community?
RW: The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber, a non-profit organization produces Oktoberfest Zinzinnati.
RAL: Why should people come to your event?
RW: Cincinnati is a region rich in tradition and alive in the times. At Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, you’ll see a vibrant mix of cultures and contrasts, coming together across bridges, regions, and backgrounds to create a one-of-a-kind celebration.
For more information about Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, please visit the event website.