13 Places to Celebrate Oktoberfest in Raleigh (and beyond) For 2022

Okay friends. It’s nearly Oktoberfest in Raleigh time and I’m going to be real brave now and share a photo of me enjoying the original Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany way back in 1997.

man and girl drinking stein beers at munich oktoberfest
Caz at Oktoberfest, Munich

That was when I was 21. At least I am not the one wearing napkins on my head. That was my friend Patto, the kind of person you want to drink beer with at Oktoberfest.

We had two days in the Munich beer halls drinking steins and prosting (a toast when drinking alcohol) while listening to German oompah and chatting with locals in an effort to understand their culture. I’m not sure if it was the beer, but I was delightfully surprised at how funny the Germans were!

How could you not love a culture that creates a two week long festival around beer? A festival that’s so much fun many countries around the world have adopted it as their own and join the celebrations. 

Large group of people drinking beer together at Oktoberfest festival
Oktoberfest in Munich. Photo by DepositPhotos.com

There’s no way Raleigh is going to miss out on that beer and festival fun, and if you are searching on your phone for Oktoberfest near me, our list below is for you!

While the Oktoberfest celebrations in Raleigh may not involve beer halls next to beer halls, each packed to the brim with thousands of people, they’re still offering loads of beer and Gemutlichkeit – that’s German for good times (not a direct translation but a thereabout). 

How did Oktoberfest start?

Group of friends drinking beer together at Oktoberfest
Image courtesy of DepositPhotos.com

Oktoberfest began on October 12, 1810 to celebrate the marriage of the crown prince of Bavaria, (who later became King Louis I) to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. 

By the late 20th century food and drink booths grew into the large beer halls with balconies and bandstands that are now hosted by local brewers and can fit up to 6,000 people. 

Oktoberfest in Munich draws more than 6 million revelers a year who drink about 2 million gallons of beer. The festival also has rides and entertainment. But somehow I missed all of that? Blame Patto!

4 people holding up jugs or beer in celebration at Oktoberfest
PROST! Image courtesy of DepositPhotos.com

Many cities around the world, especially those with large German populations or heritage, hold Oktoberfests modeled on the original Munich festival. They feature beer, German food and music, and lederhosen or dirndls costumes! You must bring with you good cheer and an open heart to prost with strangers. 

When is Oktoberfest?

Large group of people celebrating in a tent for Oktoberfest in Munich
Oktoberfest in Munich. Photo by DepositPhotos.com

Oktoberfest in Munich is actually no longer even held in October (well a few days of it are). Opening day is always mid-September and goes for around 16 days finishing in the first week of October. It was brought forward so people could enjoy the longer daylight hours!

Oktoberfest celebrations in Raleigh will be held across September and October. 

Check out the nearest brewery to you – I am sure if they don’t have a specific Oktoberfest event on, they will at least have an Oktoberfest flavored beer. 

A word of warning: If steins are involved and you hold a few of them, you will end up with sore muscles and bruises on your hands. 

We will update this post if we discover more Oktoberfest in Raleigh events. Be sure to subscribe to our email below as we send weekly updates with fresh finds and happenings. We have a free PDF Fall Bucket List for all our subscribers:

We’ll start with the Triangle’s largest Oktoberfest and follow up with the smaller brewery events in date order. Get your calendar ready as prosting will begin this weekend! 

Triangle Oktoberfest, Fri. Sept 30 – Sat. Oct 1st

People standing in a line holding up glasses of beer
Photo: TriangleOktoberfest.org
  • Where:  Koka Booth Amphitheater in Cary
  • Time: Fri 30 5-10 p.m.; Sat1st: 12-8 p.m.
  • Cost:  Starts at $20
  • Website: TriangleOktoberfest.org

The biggest Oktoberfest event in Raleigh is the Triangle Oktoberfest held in Koka Booth Amphitheater in Cary. This is the closest to Munich tradition that you’ll get here in Raleigh. 

This authentic German festival is focused on family fun, traditional Bavarian food and fare; and plenty of local and authentic German beers from Munich.

Of course, rest assured there will be Polka music to ramp up that Oompah vibe. 

Live entertainment will showcase The Black Forest Band from Canada, the largest and most exciting Wiener Dog Races in NC, a kid friendly Kinder Platz with inflatables and face painting, MassKrugstemmen (Stein Hoist), Schlagen-Hammer (Hammer-Striking) competitions, and the Miss and Mr. Oktoberfest contest.

Large group of people at a beer festival - Oktoberfest Raleigh
Image by TriangleOktoberfest.org

100% of this rotary sponsored event goes to charity. This year the beneficiary is the Meg’s Smile Foundation.

I’m so disappointed that the largest Oktoberfest in Central North Carolina conflicts with the World of Bluegrass Event. 

As my Oktoberfest mate Patto would say when faced with the decision to choose white or red wine, “Can’t decide. Have a bit of both.” Looks like it will be Friday night Oktoberfest, Saturday Bluegrass for me!

Vicious Fishes Apex Sharktoberfest, Sat., Sept 10, 2022

  • Where: 2237 Old US 1 Apex, NC 
  • Time: 3-7 p.m.
  • Cost: Free
  • Website 

Since Vicious Fishes Brewery has a focus on clean German lagers, it makes sense you’d want to celebrate Oktoberfest at their Apex location, especially since they have a big biergarten conducive to ledenhoser style dancing.

You can prost to the release of their annual festbier, Sharktoberfest, a smooth, clean, slightly malty lager that will transport you to the beer halls of Munich. There will be limited edition Sharktoberfest Steins and Sharktoberfest T-Shirts for sale.

I am very excited about Vicious Fishes upcoming new Cary location complete with fire pit and live music.

Raleigh Brewing, Sun., Sept. 11, 2022

  • Where: 3709 Neil St, West Raleigh
  • Time: 1-6 p.m.
  • Cost: Free
  • Website: Facebook Event

The annual Oktoberfest event at Raleigh Brewing will feature German food from Annelore’s German Bakery, Capone’s Chicago Eats, and Empire Eats. 

The Little German Band will provide the live music. Come dressed for costume contests and be ready to consume Raleigh Brewing’s Oktoberfest Lager – notes of sweet caramel, baked bread, and herbal hops.

Gizmo Brew Works, Sat., Sept. 17, 2022

Group of men holding our jugs of beer at Oktoberfest
Image by GizmoBrewworks.com
  • Where: 5907 Triangle Dr, North West Raleigh
  • Time: 12-10 p.m.
  • Cost: Free
  • Website: 

Known for their live music and open mic sessions, Gizmo Brew won’t disappoint with their Oktoberfest celebration heavy on the live music component with three live acts. 

Tents will have you covered for all weather conditions. A variety of food options will be available from 454 Grill, Crave BBQ & Hot Dogs and Funnel Queens. 

Plus plenty of craft beer including their Oktoberfest ale 0.5L beer boot for $20 including your first pour. 

The Glass Jug RTP, Sat. Sep 17, 2022

  • Where: 5410 NC Highway 55, Suite V, Durham
  • Time: 12-10 p.m.
  • Cost: Free
  • Website

With their large beer garden and central location to Raleigh and Durham in the RTP, The Glass Jug’s Oktoberfest will be a fun event. 

They’ll have special draft-only German style lagers, including their Research Triangle Pilsner and Scientific Uncertainty, a Schwarzbier (German Dark Lager). It also coincides with their 8th anniversary so will have Eighth Element, their 8th Anniversary barrel-aged sour with apricots and limited-edition 1L beer mugs that come filled with house-brewed lagers for $20 (and $10 refills).

The beer garden will have kids activities set up, Mr Wings & Mrs Thingz will serve up food, there’ll be stein hoisting competitions and then of course, the Little German Band & Dancers. 

Compass Rose Brewery, Fri.,Sept 23, 2022

  • Where: 3201 Northside Dr, Northeast Raleigh
  • Time: 3-10 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

The 5,500 sq ft taproom of Compass Rose makes it an ideal Raleigh brewery for Oktoberfest celebrations that include stein hosting, fresh pretzels and brats, accordion player Tom Neuhauser, and the release of their German inspired Wunderfest on tap. 

Bombshell Beer Company, Sat., Sep 24, 2022

Poster with people holding jugs of beer promoting Oktoberfest
Image by Bombshellbeer.com
  • Where: 120 Quantum Dr, Holly Springs, NC 27540
  • Time: 12-11 p.m.
  • Cost: Free

This female owned brewery in Holly Springs will have a Wunderbar day filled with delicious beer; fun games and contests; good food, music and their Oktoberfest brew. 

There’ll be a Stein Hoist Contest, Beer Puppets, Hammer Game and live music from Tom Neuhauser on Accordion and One 40 – a U2 tribute band in the evening. 

Fortnight Brewing, Sat., Sep 24, 2022

  • Where: 1006 SW Maynard Rd Cary, NC 27511
  • Time: 12-11 p.m.
  • Cost: Free
  • Website

Fortnight Brewing in Cary knows how to put on an Oktoberfest Celebration. At this all-day event you’ll find special Oktoberfest brews, bratwurst, giant pretzels, and desert treats. 

There’s also a ton of games and competitions to participate in including a corn hole tournament, disc golf tournament, stein holding competition, kan jam contest, and glow in the dark putt putt

Lonerider Brewery, Sat., Sept 24, 2022

  • Where: 8816 Gulf Ct | Five Points }|Wake Forest Hideout
  • Time: 12-8 p.m
  • Cost: Free
  • Website 

Lonerider will be celebrating Oktoberfest at their three Wake County locations: Near Umstead State Park, Wake Forest and Five Points. 

The all-day event will feature a stein holding and hammerschlagen competition, and their award winning Oktoberfest and German style Hefewizen and other traditional beers from Germany. 

They’re adding a dash of Americana to their festival with their award-winning bourbon and original outlaw cigars

Apex Oktoberfest, Sat., Oct 8, 2022

  •  Where: Apex Town Hall Campus
  • Time:  starts at noon
  • Cost: free

This family-friendly Oktoberfest celebration in Apex features a Car Show, Corn Hole Tourney, Food Trucks, Beer Garden, Kids Zone, live music and beer! This event is put on by the American Legion Post 124.

Lafayette Village Oktoberfest, Sat,. Oct 8, 2022

Shopping village, tree and green grass - Lafeyette Village
  • Where: Lafayette Village, North Raleigh
  • Time:  12-4 p.m.
  • Cost: free

It may be a French inspired village, but that doesn’t mean German traditions can’t be celebrated. This North Raleigh Oktoberfest festival will feature Fall Brews, German inspired Foods, Live Music, Shopping & Fun throughout the Village!

Join the fun Passport Contest by visiting all the Village Shops and getting your Passport stamped for a chance to win a $100 Gift Card to any Lafayette Village Shop!

Durham Oktoberfest, Sat., Oct 15, 2022

  • Where: Motorco Music Hall, Durham
  • Time: 
    • Session 1: 1pm – 5pm
    • Session 2: 6pm – 10pm
  • Cost: $10 now | $15 at door (includes first beer and Marchtoberfest glass!)
  • Oktoberfest Tickets

This annual Oktoberfest event in Motorco Music Hall in Downtown Durham has a German beer hall vibe with steins of Oktoberfest Bier, German food (bratwurst, schnitzels, pretzels) and live oompah party, music and dancing from the Little German Band and Dancers. 

Oktoberfest Clouds Brewing, Sat.,Oct 29, 2022

  • Where: 1233 Front St, Downtown Raleigh
  • Time: 12-8 p.m
  • Cost: $10 now | $15 at door (includes first beer and Marchtoberfest glass!)
  • Oktoberfest Tickets

The Little German Band & Dancers is back at this German inspired Raleigh brewery!

I love how Clouds is prolonging Oktoberfest with an end of October event. We’ll see you under their big tent! The party will host traditional contests, food trucks, and special beer releases including their Signature Oktoberfest beer from Clouds Brewing is Cloudstoberfest. 

There’ll also be a keg ceremony and stein holding contests. 

There you have it, a great list Raleigh Oktoberfest events. Will we see you at one of these celebrations? Share in the comments below which event you are looking forward to?

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