There’s still two German bands to go and always popular Local’s Night where everyone is welcome. Contest finals are still on tap—pun intended—along with dance groups, Unplugged evening and closing night German Spooktacular with costume contest and not one band but two.
Big Bear Oktoberfest is in full swing—and polka—as the event’s namesake month arrives. Four of the eight Oktoberfest weekends remain as the calendar flips with an entire month of oompa music inside, rock and roll, blues, even nationally renowned Doo Wah Riders outside. No wonder AOL, Ski Magazine, LowerFares.com and AskMen.com have all listed Big Bear Oktoberfest #1 in Southern California and in the Top 10 best festivals in the country.
2017 sees three direct-from-Germany bands at Oktoberfest and first one in September was outstanding. Mats’s Infinity featured Matthias Kremer of Aalbachtal Express—which plays October 14-15 and 21-22—and brought a lively sound to Oktoberfest with classic songs like “In Heaven There is no Beer” and “Happy Wanderer.” Plus Big Bear’s first anthem!
Goldeisen band also from Germany is on Oct. 6-8 which includes the Friday Local’s Night when admission for residents and visitors alike is just $6. The group was an Oktoberfest favorite three years ago and returns with an expanded lineup. Like double! The band sports nine musicians when it takes the stage for a mix of German standards and American favorites.
The band’s foundation is four brothers who play German rock with a folk music twist. Goldeisen is wildly popular at Oktoberfests along with apres ski in Bavarian lodges. The band drew international acclaim in 2012 with its hit song “Pepperoni” which will be on the Big Bear playlist and in 2013 had two songs nominated for the Best Oktoberfest Hits CD produced by the famous Munich Oktoberfest.
Aalbachtal Express is another direct-from-Germany band making its third Oktoberfest appearance. Aalbachtal Express from Southern Germany impressed last year and is back Oct. 14-15 and 21-22. The 11-member band is the largest to ever play at Big Bear Oktoberfest, producing every note live and is famous for authenticity and upbeat performances.
Aalbachtal has entertained audiences during hundreds of performances throughout Europe. The group draws from a German music club over 100 members strong. From brass band music to contemporary chart favorites the band has played throughout festivals and Oktoberfests in not just Germany but throughout Europe, even for soldiers at NATO base in Naples.
The outdoor stage has become such a hit outside, with live music under the pines, that it has been renamed and completely redesigned with larger stage lined by hay bales and concert-quality lighting and sound. Two bands play each Saturday on the new Wyatt’s stage from 3-11 p.m. with top groups, the biggest being nationally renowned Doo Wah Riders on Oct. 21, preceded earlier in the day by its alter ego the Craw-Daddy-O’s.
What better way to celebrate Halloween than at German Spooktacular on Oct. 28? Close out Oktoberfest in style by wearing your best costume—the contest features expanded $1,200 cash purse.
Spooktacular stars not one but two bands to wrap up Oktoberfest’s 47th celebration. German American Brass Band and the Kalifornia Krauts both make their Big Bear debut. There’s also children’s dance group Kleinen Bar Tanzer and Auf wiedersehen closing ceremonies.
Big Bear Oktoberfest is on Saturdays from noon-midnight (admission $19.99, $14.99 seniors, $9.99 child). Sundays are family days from noon-5:30 p.m. with children 12 and under free and adults $9, $7 seniors. Clip the coupon for FREE Sunday adult admission on page 11 of October 2017 issue of Big Bear Today Magazine, available for no charge at fine lodges, restaurants, shops and other locations in Big Bear. And click here to read the official Big Bear Oktoberfest 2017 souvenir magazine with everything Ein Prosit!
Prepurchase tickets include priority entry; purchase online at www.bigbearevents.com or call the Convention Center at (909) 585-3000.