Yes, it is that time of year again – time for one of the biggest and most popular festivals in the Dayton Region… welcome to the DAI Oktoberfest 2010! This festival is as old as me (now 39 years old) and happens 9/25 – 9/26 outside of the Dayton Art Institute, with a popular Friday night preview party the night before. And DaytonMostMetro.com has FREE TICKETS to give away – details at the end of this article!
I had the pleasure of talking to this year’s co-chairs – Margo and Greg Rubertus, long-time volunteers and associate board members with DAI. Oktoberfest is quite a production, with 15 subcommittees and over 800 volunteers. In fact, this year so many people volunteered that they had to turn away around a hundred people! This year the festival is presented by MillerCoors and features several domestic & specialty beers, 10 different craft beers, a cask opening (Saturday 1pm), beer & wine tastings and sixteen unique international beers with Spaten as this year’s German Beer Sponsor. But this event is not just about beer – since it is a DAI event, one can find a dazzling display of artisan pieces, unique food items, kid-friendly art activities and live music on two stages. And even if it rains, the tented area between the International Beer booth and the Main Stage has been extended to provide guests with a more enjoyable atmosphere, no matter what Mother Nature might bring! A good thing, because the DAI Oktoberfest 2010 expects over 30,000 attendees!
Another great addition to this year’s event is a bigger, better-than-ever Craft Beer Tent. Both the size of this popular tent and the number of craft beers offered have been increased. Savor a delicious craft brew while catching the big game on a large-screen TV – it doesn’t get much better!
The Home Brew Beer Contest is back by popular demand, to highlight some of the area’s most talented artists in the libations medium. Though samples are not available for public consumption, pre-appointed guest judges will decide who has Dayton’s best home brew through multiple tastings at Oktoberfest!
The MeadWestvaco FamilyFest provides free art activities and games for the kids from noon – 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Kids may also sign up for the free ProLiance Energy Museum Kids Club.
Free parking and shuttle service are available for Oktoberfest on September 25 and 26. Park at Imperial Packaging Corp. on Edwin C. Moses Blvd. (about one mile east of UD Arena) and take the free shuttle to and from Oktoberfest. Visitors may also park downtown and take the free RTA Oktoberfest shuttle from stops along Main Street, Second Street and Fifth Street in the Oregon District.
Oktoberfest hours are noon – 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 25, and noon – 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 26. The museum’s galleries will be open noon – 6 p.m. on Saturday, with guided tours available from 6 – 7:30 p.m. The galleries will be open noon – 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Advance tickets for Oktoberfest are $4 for adults and seniors and $2 for students (ages 7-18). Tickets purchased at the gate are $6 for adults, $4 for seniors (60+) and $3 for students (ages 7-18). Children 6 and under are free.
Oktoberfest advance tickets may be purchased online at www.daytonartinstitute.org/oktoberfest, at the museum’s Visitor Services Desk during regular museum hours, or by calling 937-512-0136. Advance tickets may also be purchased at Arrow Wine & Spirits (all locations), Bee Gee’s Mini Mart, Culinary Company, Cuvee Wine Bar & Cellar, Dorothy Lane Market (all locations), Dublin Pub, LexisNexis and South Park Tavern.
The annual Oktoberfest Preview Party takes place Friday, September 24, from 7 – 11 p.m. Preview Party guests enjoy complimentary draft beer and wine, live entertainment by local favorite Velvet Crush, and great socializing and networking in a casual, less-crowded atmosphere. Guests will also have the first opportunity to purchase beautiful hand crafted wares by local and national artisans. The museum galleries, including the special exhibition Modern Masters from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, will be open to Preview Party guests from 7 – 10 p.m.
Space is limited and advance purchase of tickets for the Preview Party is recommended. Advance tickets are $45 for museum members and $55 for non-members. All Preview Party tickets purchased at the gate are $80.
Preview Party advance tickets may be purchased at the museum’s Visitor Services Desk during regular hours, by calling 937-512-0136, or online at www.daytonartinstitute.org/oktoberfest.
Oktoberfest 2010 receives support from Presenting Sponsor MillerCoors, Preview Party Sponsor Steve R. Rauch, Inc., Supporting Sponsors Clear Channel Radio, Liberty Savings Bank, MeadWestvaco and ProLiance Energy, and Patron Sponsors Arrow Wine & Spirits, Coca-Cola, Dayton City Paper, Grandview Hospital, Greater Dayton RTA, Imperial Packaging Corp. and Time Warner Cable.
AND NOW A CHANCE TO WIN FREE TICKETS…
We have SIX PAIRS & THREE FOUR-PACKS to give away, good for either Saturday or Sunday. Simply comment on this post with your favorite things about Oktoberfest (or what you look forward to if you’ve never been) and we’ll randomly choose winners on Wednesday September 22. Be sure to enter your correct email address, which will not be made public.
UPDATE (9/23/2010): Congratulations to Shana, CJ, Andrea, Mike, Brian, Kim, Melissa, Zack, Jane – you all have won DAI Oktoberfest tickets!