Celebrate German food, culture and, of course, lager at these Boston area shindigs
Samuel Adams Octoberfest: Enjoy the German vibes at two locations on September 22–24. Both the original Jamaica Plain brewery and the newer locale (pictured) near Faneuil Hall Marketplace boast opportunities to test your strength by holding steins aloft, listen to live music and sup on special food offerings. The weekend kicks off September 21 from 6–8 p.m. in JP with a three-course, VIP beer dinner in the bier keller.
Boston Public Market Oktoberfest: The year-round, indoor farmers market above the MBTA's Haymarket subway stop offers a sausage-eating contest, music from a traditional German band, a raffle and plenty of beer on September 23 from noon–4 p.m. There's even fun for the little ones in the works, including a pasta making class courtesy of Seven Hills Pasta Co. from 10–11:30 a.m. Come back on October 12 from 7–9 p.m. for the facility's sixth annual Harvest Party, a ticketed bash that continues the fall vibes and features craft beer, cocktails, live music, dancing, raffles, a silent auction and a giant pumpkin for photo ops.
High Street Place Fall Fest: This free, Oktoberfest-inspired shindig at the Downtown food hall takes place September 23 beginning at 1 p.m. Complete with a beer garden serving Notch Brewing Festbier, stein-holding competitions, pumpkin decorating, face painting, live music, games and seasonal bites and libations from 18 bars and restaurants, there's truly something for everyone.
Harpoon Octoberfest: The decades-old tradition at the Seaport facility marks the release of the brewery’s Märzen-style seasonal lager with oompah music, stein-holding and pretzel-eating contests, chicken dancing and more on September 29 from 6–11 p.m. and September 30 from noon–7 p.m. Come back on October 30 from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. for Harpoon Dogtoberfest, where owners and their pooches are welcome to enjoy a fun day that includes a three-mile run/walk, a dog show and on-site pet adoptions, all to benefit the Kenary Brain Tumor Research Fund at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and MSPCA-Angell.
Harvard Square Oktoberfest: One of Cambridge's biggest annual celebrations, this giant street fest on October 8 from 11 a.m.–6 p.m. boasts multiple stages of live music, loads of food and craft vendors, beer gardens, family-friendly activities and nearly 100,000 revelers who line the thoroughfares of the famed home of the country's oldest university.