Breckenridge Oktoberfest, September 11-13, 2020, is the largest street party in the Rocky Mountains and you won’t want to miss it! So if you’re planning to join us this September for ice-cold brews, German food, polka dancing, fall activities and incredible views, here’re our best Oktoberfest tips and what you need to know.
Show up Early and Park, Walk or Ride
For the best experience, spend the night and leave the car parked during the day. At check-in, ask your lodging company for the easiest way to head to Main Street. Most likely, you’ll be in walking distance or a short bus ride away. Most lodging companies and hotels have free shuttles servicing downtown Breckenridge as well. If you must drive up for the day, park for free at the Satellite Lot on the north end of town and jump on the Breck Free Ride, the free, community-wide transportation service to all the festivities. Breckenridge downtown parking lots are paid and fill up fast during Oktoberfest. While the Paulaner beer doesn’t officially start flowing down Main Street until 2 p.m. on Friday and 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Main Street closures start at 6 a.m. on Friday for the weekend, so plan your adventures accordingly and start early!
No Pet, No Problem
We know you love your furry friends, but due to the extensive food and beverage offerings, we ask that you please leave your four-legged friends at home. They’ll be happier at home anyway out of the heat and large crowds. Event security will turn around anyone that brings a pet into the event, regardless of if you’ve pre-purchased a stein.
How to buy steins, food, & drinks
When you pre-purchase your collectible stein, you’ll secure your stein, plus you’ll receive two beer tokens (a $6 value per token). Collectible steins historically sell out by Saturday afternoon. After 2 p.m. on Sunday, all remaining pre-purchased steins that haven’t been picked up will be released and sold on a first-come, first-served basis. At the event, you’ll be able to purchase your steins with cash or card while supplies last.
Most food vendors accept CASH only. The closest ATMs are located at Downstairs at Eric’s (111 S. Main Street), Main Street Mall (311 S Main St, Breckenridge near Shirt and Ernies) and Kenosha (located at 301 S. Main St) Additional ATMs are available at nearby First Bank, US Bank, Alpine Bank and Bank of the West, as well as inside Fatty’s Pizzeria.
Beer vendors take tokens only. You can purchase beer tokens at the North and South entrance tents and the token only tent in the center of the event with cash or card. Beer/alcohol vendors will not be able to sell tokens or take cash.
Choose Your Oktoberfest Day Wisely
Breckenridge really knows how to party, hence why Oktoberfest spans three full days. Each day is filled with live music, beer, and tasty treats, but knowing when to go based on your group or preferences is key. Saturday is by far the most popular day, so if you are looking for lots of fun and people, that’s your day! If you are looking for a mellower celebration or have the whole family and kids with you, we recommend celebrating on Friday afternoon or Sunday. If you’re planning to attend Sunday and would like a commemorative mug, be sure to pre-purchase your stein online. Steins sell-out every year by Saturday afternoon and it is the only way to ensure you receive one.
For a little escape from the crowds, a family play area will be available all three days with a free bounce house and as well as paid activities on the Riverwalk Center lawn (just across the river from the Welcome Center). It’s a great place for families to kick-back, and the parents can still hang on to their beer. Be sure to check out the annual Ski Swap benefiting Team Summit at the Riverwalk Center, as well as the Oktoberfest Hockey Tournament at Stephen C. West Ice Arena.
- Local’s Tip: Because most visitors will be at the festival on Saturday, choose that day for a hike or fall activity and hit Oktoberfest Friday or Sunday!
Explore More Than Just Main Street
Very few have the stamina to celebrate Oktoberfest for three full days straight, so plan to explore some other activities while in Breckenridge. Oktoberfest just happens to be around the peak of the fall colors, and due to the towns high elevation, Breckenridge is one of the first places in the country you’ll see the leaves turn. Take a hike, bike ride or scenic drive with the whole family through golden aspens, or spend the day with some relaxation by the pool.
- Local’s Tip: This is the last chance of the summer to take advantage of the free BreckConnect Gondola, so take in breathtaking views of the fall foliage at Epic Discovery. The Peak 8 Basecamp offers a variety of family-friendly activities including the Gold Runner Coaster, Alpine Slides, bungee trampolines, ziplines and more. Visit the Welcome Center for more activity ideas and Oktoberfest tips.