Big Bear Lake's Oktoberfest Starts to Oompah in September

Start polishing your Chicken Dance: The accordions will sound on the Saturday after Labor Day.


What to Know

  • Sept. 10 through Nov. 5, 2022 (weekends)
  • Big Bear Lake Convention Center
  • Tickets go on sale in early August

FALL IS NOT ON THE WIND — every time we fan ourselves, or seek a sliver of shade, we remember this fiery fact — and yet? You might be able to detect the wonderful and gentle whoosh of air leaving an accordion, if you turn your ear in the right direction, and sensing the opening chords of the Chicken Dance? That, too, can happen weeks before summer is done. For there's a bit of whimsical magic to an Oktoberfest, and definitely one that has been oompahing for well over 50 years. That's very much the festive case at Big Bear Lake, which already gives off the alpine-cool vibes that are much-associated with the Oktoberfest celebrations of Germany. It isn't a surprise that this celebration is a major one on the California calendar, and it will be twirling its dirndl and raising a stein starting in early September 2022.

MAKE THAT SEPT. 10, the Saturday following Labor Day. The festivities will then dance each weekend, right through the first Sunday of November. Attendees should prepare for "imported German beers, food courts that give off aromas of authentic German fare," and, yep, those oh-so-daffy Chicken Dances (the organizers describe them as "adrenaline-fueled," and if you've ever witnessed or participated in a Chicken Dance, you know this to be true). Frankenrebellen Express, a band from Bavaria, will perform over the first two weekends in October, and there will be other delights to anticipate, like traditional dance troupes, a trio of military appreciation weekends (they'll include complimentary admission, with identification), and lots more. Tickets? They'll be available in early August, when fall will most definitely be on the wind.

DO CHECK THE SCHEDULE, as details become available, to make sure you're visiting Oktoberfest on a weekend that has the band you'd like to see, gratis admission for military members, or other special doings.

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