There will only be a few German beer festivals celebrating Oktoberfest in Mississippi in 2017. Based on past years, we expect there may only be three. The state does have the lowest percentage of residents claiming German ancestry of any state. Fortunately, there are several options nearby in Memphis, Birmingham and New Orleans if you can’t make it to one of the below fall festivals.
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Saint John Oktoberfest - Hattiesburg, MS - Oct 1 to Oct 1, 2016
St. John Lutheran Church, with many of its church members descendants of German immigrants, has hosted this annual event for more than 30 years. 2016 will mark the 39th Annual St. John Oktoberfest. It shares German food and culture with visitors to raise money for the church’s mission work. They offer German brats, sauerkraut, potato salad and other food for sale while guests listen to folk songs. There is also a silent auction, quilt raffle and deli featuring German meats and desserts.
Olive Branch Octoberfest - Olive Branch, MS - Oct 1 to Oct 1, 2016
An annual, all day festival sponsored by the Olive Branch Beautification Commission. Admission is free. The longest running event in the city’s history. From what I have seen, it appears to have more of a “October festival” vibe than a German festival celebration atmosphere. Crafts, games and food are available. Children’s activities in the past have included face-painting, sand art and mini golf. They also host a number of arts and crafts vendors who display their products. The winners of the Olive Branch Arts Council Annual Photography Contest will have their pictures on display as well. The attendance figures that I have seen were from 2010 indicated they had approximately 4000 visitors.
Cleveland Oktoberfest - Cleveland, MS - Oct 7 to Oct 8, 2016
More than 15,000 gather here every year for the event that has been called one of the best outdoor festivals in the Delta. It has been held annually for more than 25 years and is organized by more than 100 community volunteers. While you are here, you will also be able to enjoy the Mississippi Delta State Barbecue Championship. The event kicks off on Friday afternoon, when the BBQ contest (featuring chefs from around the South) starts and they begin announcing some of the division winners. Live entertainment and dancing continue well into the evening. The antique car show and craft booths are on Saturday. Children’s activities include inflatables, face painting, rock climbing wall, train rides and more. So prepare for a weekend of pork barbecue, German brats, live music and fun. Location: Commerce St Greenstrip, Cleveland MS
Tupelo Oktoberfest - Tupelo, MS - Oct 13 to Oct 13, 2016
Vicksburg Oktoberfest – Vicksburg, MS – Sept 20, 2015
We have just added these maps with the locations of each Oktoberfest. We may not have had the exact location for each Oktoberfest so in some instances we have placed the marker in the general vicinity of the Oktoberfest. Be sure to get specific directions from another source and do not solely rely on our map at the moment. We have also noticed that the markers may not show up on some mobile browsers. We will work to sort out this bug in the future.
Please confirm dates, locations and activities available at the Oktoberfest before going. That’s one reason that we provide a website address when we find one. We attempt to ensure that the information for each Oktoberfest is accurate but there are bound to be a few errors. If you let us know when you find one, we will fix it. In some cases, we may link to the 2014 event when information for 2015 is not available. Do not be fooled.
The festivals listed range in size. Some events may have hundreds of thousands of attendees. Others may have only a handful. We’re sorry that we don’t have more information about attendance numbers at the moment. We will do our best to add this information as time goes on.
Professionalism varies as well. Some Oktoberfests are professional operations with large budgets. Others are local operations run by volunteers. Do your due diligence before making plans to attend so that you know what to expect. We will happily publish information about your experience with any Oktoberfest so that our visitors will be better informed in the future.
Some Oktoberfests are more family friendly than others. If you have small children, look for an Oktoberfest that has activities for kids. Other events start out with family friendly activities and become more adult oriented as it becomes later in the evening.
Not all Oktoberfest celebrations will be authentic German festival experiences. Some may simply be an excuse to drink rather than celebrate German heritage. Some may call themselves Oktoberfest but provide local or seasonal beer rather than authentic German Oktoberfest beer. Be sure to consider the type of celebration that you are looking to attend when you pick your Oktoberfest.
Activities offered at each Oktoberfest varies. Some activities that you may find are parades, keg tapping ceremony, beer gardens, Miss Oktoberfest or costume contests, stein holding contests, bratwurst eating contest, chicken dance, wiener races, keg toss, live German bands and local entertainment, polka dancing and fairground games. Some Oktoberfest events will just have beer and brats.
Please don’t drink and drive. We want everyone to get home safe. Use a designated driver or take public transportation.
Do you run one of the Oktoberfests listed? Feel free to send us additional information and we will add it. We apologize for any errors: send us corrections when you find them!
If you are looking for another Oktoberfest to attend, take a look at the list of the most popular Oktoberfest festivals in the United States. You should also check these surrounding states: Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Tennessee.
Whether you have found a festival to enjoy or you will be celebrating from home, Funtober has some other resources that will help you prepare for Oktoberfest. Read about the history of Oktoberfest. Learn about Oktoberfest beer. Find the words to Oktoberfest music. Plan your Oktoberfest outfit. And try cooking some of these Oktoberfest recipes.
Find other fun things to do in Mississippi in October: