It’s almost time for Oktoberfest in Eastern Kansas! But as much as we all love this annual Bavarian tradition, it might surprise you to know that Kansas has been brewing in German heritage since the late 19th century, when thousands of Germans and Austrians emigrated and settled right in our backyards. At one point, they represented nearly 20% of the state’s population! (Let loose your best Keanu-style “Whoa.”)
Oktoberfest isn’t just a fun once-a-year event—it’s an honored tradition that’s inherently Kansan! So, snap on the lederhosen, pop on a Tyrolean hat, and get your stomach ready for all the brat and sauerkraut it can handle. THIS. IS. OKTOBERFEST! (Please remember to drink responsibly – plan ahead and get home safely.)
Best 2019 Oktoberfest Events & Things To Do
Oktoberfest at Fairlawn Plaza
Date: September 28, 2019 (9:30 AM)
Location: Fairlawn Plaza in Topeka, KS
Price: Free (donations welcome)
For Kids: Children’s Coloring Contest | Petland Wiener Dog Races | Kid’s Polka Contest | Games
For Adults: Dave Salmon Band | Adult Polka Contest | Raffle Prizes | Bierstein Holding Contest
The Topeka family-friendly tradition continues September 28! Come for the brats and live music, stay for the brats and live music. Oh! Don’t forget about the dancing, dog races, prize drawings, and, of course, all the authentic bier available to sample.
Lee’s Summit Oktoberfest
Date: September 27-28, 2019
Location: Downtown Lee’s Summit, MO
For Kids: Baby Contest | Kids Street | Carnival (open until 9/29) | Petting Zoo | Pony Rides | Arts & Crafts | Rootbiergarten
For Adults: Biergarten (of course) | Live Music | Arts & Crafts Fair | Home Brew Competition | Grape Stomp
Celebrate Oktoberfest before October right in the heart of Lee’s Summit! Enjoy German-style lagers, craft beers, authentic Bavarian food, and a weekend full of free fun for the whole family.
St. John’s Oktoberfest
Date: September 28, 2019 (4 PM)
Location: St. John Evangelist Catholic Parish in Lawrence, KS
For Kids: Children’s Activities | Games | Arts & Crafts
For Adults: Bier | Food | More Bier & More Food
The 23rd Annual St. Join’s Oktoberfest kicks off at 4 PM on Saturday, September 28, in the parish’s parking lot. The main reasons to attend this event in Lawrence, KS: Loads of German food and loads of German bier! Grab some Wienerschnitzel, a stein of Märzen, and then go back for seconds. (Sounding like the perfect evening in Lawrence, huh?)
Date: October 4-5, 2019
Location: Crown Center in Kansas City, MO
For Kids: Cornhole | Carnival Games | Arts & Crafts
For Adults: Bier Tents | Live Bands | Bavarian-Style “Best Dressed” Competition | Photo Booths
Kansas City’s famous Oktoberfest event kicks off on October 4 this year. It’s one of the largest Oktoberfests in the Midwest, and you’d be silly to miss it. Kids under the age of 12 years are free to attend, and GA tickets are just $8 in advance. That’s a small price to pay for hours of entertainment.
Date: October 4, 2019 (5:30 PM)
Location: Shawnee Civic Centre in Shawnee, KS
Nominated for several “Best Family Event in Shawnee” awards over the years, Oktoberfest at Shawnee’s Civic Centre is the perfect place for an impromptu Friday Bavaria-thon. Expect tons of music (from polka to country), authentic German cuisine and bier, wonderful live performances, and tons of activities for kids and adults. If you can’t make a full weekend of Oktoberfest in Topeka, this is the next-best option!
Atchison Junior Guild Oktoberfest
Date: October 5
Location: Atchison Commercial Street Mall in Atchison, KS
Now in its 38th year, the Atchison Junior Guild Oktoberfest event is a local favorite. More than 100 booths and vendors will be set up to sell handmade arts and crafts, food, pet accessories, clothing, and so much more. Musicians will fill the streets, as will performers of all ages. All proceeds raised will directly benefit the Atchison community.
Dogtober Fest 2019
Date: October 20, 2019 (10 AM)
Location: Kemper Outdoor Education Center in Blue Springs, MO
Price: Free with dog food donation
For Kids: Lots and Lots of Dogs to Pet | Sack Races | Dog Tricks & Demonstrations | Scavenger Hunt |Games
For Adults: Annual Tails for Trails Dog Walk | Dog/Owner Look-A-Like Contest | Adopt-A-Pet Booth | Veterinarians | Groomers | Raffle Drawings | Food Trucks
For Dogs: Everything
Take a trip through Kansas City for a doggone fantastic pseudo-Oktoberfest in Blue Springs, MO: Dogtober Fest! Just be sure to pack your Nissan SUV with all of Spot’s favorite toys. All donated goods and money will benefit the KOEC and several local animal shelters. Wunderbar!
Did we miss any other local must-visit Oktoberfest events? Let us know and we’ll amend our list. Otherwise, enjoy Germany, Kansas-style!
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Contact our Lawrence auto dealership at (785) 856-7127 to speak with someone from our sales or service team. If you’d like to view our selection in person, you’ll find us at 2101 W 29th Terrace in Lawrence, KS.