Column: Oktoberfest to make its return after three decades

Avenue Flashes


Eins, zwei, drei, Gsuffa! Yes, it’s that time of year again. Oktoberfest is in the air and this year, after a 30-year hiatus, there’s going to be a semi-official town event again this year!

It’s called the Wild West Oktoberfest and it’s happening from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sept. 24 in the Foss parking lot, located at 13th and Arapahoe streets in Downtown Golden. 

When I was growing up around here, we had various Oktoberfests in Golden, run by different organizations through the years, but they suddenly came to a screeching halt and I could never figure out why. They were really popular, well run and put together and they were loads of fun, but one year…Poof, they were gone. That’s one of Golden’s unsolved mysteries. (Cue the spooky music here.)

But, now it’s back, with a little different name, but still incorporating all the elements that make for a great Oktoberfest plus a few bonus features. 

Let’s start with the beer. You can’t have an Oktoberfest without beer, and there will be plenty on hand. AC Golden will serve hand-crafted flavors at this event. Celebrating its fifteenth anniversary, AC Golden is craft brewery located inside the Coors Brewery. Its brewing team has over 150 years of collective brewing experience with seven brewers total, and all in all, there’s a team of 15 people that run the entire brewing company. The Coors family obviously has deep roots here in Golden and a huge reputation around the Globe, so you should be getting thirsty thinking about the eight different flavors on tap this year, including a special Oktoberfest Lager for everyone to enjoy.

Then there’s the food. This is where things move a little bit away from traditional German fare as they will have several of Golden’s favorite eateries providing the food including Bonfire Burritos, Bob’s Atomic Burgers, Outside Pizza, Rocky Mountain Soda Company, Happy Cones Ice Cream and more drink choices provided by Lifted Libations.

The live music will be provided by Polka Folka and Austrian Connection. Here’s all you need to know about that:

Ein Prosit, ein Prosit (A toast, a toast)

Der Gemütlichkeit (To cheer and good times)

Ein Prosit, ein Prosit (A toast, a toast)

Der Gemütlichkeit (To cheer and good times)

Eins, zwei, drei, Gsuffa! (One, two, three, Drink up!)

Now you are in the loop. You can fake the rest. Can’t dance the polka? Just find someone dressed for the occasion and ask them to show you. They usually love to do that and it’s only two steps. 

This event is presented by YoColorado and the proceeds go directly back into the community by supporting the Golden Civic Foundation. There are several ticket packages available running from $45 for general admission to the Gold Nugget VIP package at $149. They all include things like hats, cinch bags and a fake moustache, but add more as the package deal ramps up. For more information and to order tickets go to

But, the fun doesn’t stop at 6 p.m.. There will be after-parties at both Miners Saloon and the Golden Mill with more live music through the evening.

So, dust off those lederhosen and dirndl dresses. Oktoberfest is back in Golden and “das ist gut!” Auf Wiedersehen!

John Akal is a well-known jazz artist/drummer and leader of the 20-piece Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra. He also is president of John Akal Imaging, professional commercial photography and multimedia production. He can be reached at


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