Four Peaks Oktoberfest takes over Tempe this weekend. Here's what to know | Phoenix New Times


Your complete guide to the 50th Four Peaks Oktoberfest

Everything you need to know before raising a stein at the German festival in Tempe.
Raise a glass at the 50th Four Peaks Oktoberfest, running Oct. 13 to 15.
Raise a glass at the 50th Four Peaks Oktoberfest, running Oct. 13 to 15. Four Peaks Oktoberfest
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Four Peaks Oktoberfest is back for its golden jubilee. The Valley’s longest-running Oktoberfest will host its 50th Bavarian festival this weekend. The event, which takes over Tempe Beach Park, benefits the international exchange program Tempe Sister Cities.

This year’s fest runs Friday to Sunday and will feature local and German beer, live music, dachshund races, Runnin’ for the Brats races for humans, activities for children and plenty of pretzels and strudel.

Here's your guide to what to know, eat, drink, bring and do while at Four Peaks Oktoberfest.

What are the dates and hours?

Four Peaks Oktoberfest will run from Friday to Sunday.

Daily hours are:
  • 5 p.m.-midnight, Friday
  • 10 a.m.-midnight, Saturday
  • 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sunday

Where is Four Peaks Oktoberfest? How do I get in?

The event will take place at Tempe Beach Park at 80 W. Rio Salado Parkway. The main entrance is located at the northwest corner of Mill Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway. There are secondary entrances from the lakeside path under the Mill Avenue and light rail bridges.

Is there parking?

Public parking is available in nearby garages at 201 S. Ash Ave. and 68 E. Rio Salado Parkway as well as at the Mission Palms North Lot, at 281 S. Mill Ave. Organizers encourage people to use ride-hailing, take public transportation, walk or bike. Bike parking is available near the main entrance on Rio Salado Parkway.

How much are tickets?

Admission on Friday and Saturday is $20 at the gate for those 21 and older. Tickets may be purchased in advance online for $16. Entrance for those younger than 21 is free. On Sunday, admission is free for all.

If you arrive early, you have the chance to get a free replica 1-liter beer stein on Friday or a Four Peaks koozie on Saturday, which are available for the first 300 and 500 paid entrants, respectively.
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Four Peaks Oktoberfest includes a carnival, rides and live music, as well as German food and drink.
Four Peaks Oktoberfest

What is there to do at the event?

Four Peaks Oktoberfest offers a variety of activities, including carnival rides and games, a play zone for kids and an NFL watch party, along with quirky competitions including dachshund races, stein-holding challenges and a local celebrity brat-eating contest that includes Phoenix New Times Culture and Music Editor Jennifer Goldberg.

Friday features an opening ceremony, with a parade from Hackett House to the event, keg tapping and the crowning of this year’s Oktoberfest king and queen: John McGuire and Angie Taylor, two longtime volunteers of Tempe Sister Cities.

Saturday includes new dachshund races — the Chiweenie Challenge for chihuahua-dachshund mixes, the Senior Saunter for dogs over the age of 12, the Puppy Palooza for pooches between six months and 23 months, and Wheelin' Weenies for any pups that use a cart for mobility.

Finalists from these races can participate in the Sunday race in which dozens of dachshunds will vie to be named the fastest wiener dog in the West. The cost to register a dog for the races is $16 and proceeds benefit Southern California Dachshund Relief.

On Sunday, sip a WOW Wheat beer-mosa, watch the Arizona Cardinals take on the Los Angeles Rams on a 16-by-9-foot screen, or root for locals engaging in feats of strength in the stein-holding competition.

Are there things for kids to do?

Yes. Four Peaks Oktoberfest includes a Kinderfest area with a carnival, games and a “Hansel & Gretel” village, which will be alongside a shaded play area. There also will be carnival rides placed throughout the festival, including a Ferris wheel, spinning Dizzy Dragons and fun house.
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Bands will perform on two stages at Four Peaks Oktoberfest.
Four Peaks Oktoberfest

Will there be music?

Live music will take place all weekend across two stages. Friday’s headliners are Hollywood Gods N' Monsters, The Instant Classics and Black Bottom Lighters. Saturday features Miles Nielsen and The Rusted Hearts, Superhero and 2Tone Lizard Kings. On Sunday, Southern Ways and Rock Lobster will perform.
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Pretzels, bratwurst, potato salad and strudel are among the German foods available at Four Peaks Oktoberfest.
Jacob Tyler Dunn

What food will be served?

Four Peaks Oktoberfest will feature an array of bratwursts, carnival treats, desserts and food from local vendors.

This year’s bratwurst selections include jalapeno-cheddar, Kilt Lifter beer brats and chicken-apple sausage. Sauerkraut, German potato salad and pretzels also will be available at the brat tents. Among the carnival treats are pizza, Frito pie, churros and funnel cakes. Strudel, ice cream sandwiches and popsicles will be on hand for those with a sweet tooth.

If German-style fare isn’t your thing, Island Noodles, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit and Karen’s Kreamery are among this year’s Oktoberfest food vendors.

What drinks are available?

There will be plenty of beer, of course. Four Peaks Brewing Co. will feature its core lineup, including WOW Wheat Ale, Hop Knot IPA and its Scottish-style amber ale Kilt Lifter, along with its Munich-style Helles Golden Lager and Pumpkin Porter. Event planners also have imported beer from Germany for the occasion.

Those who wish to skip the suds will find wine, hard seltzers and canned cocktails, as well as nonalcoholic options such as lemonade and coffee.

Can I work off some of those calories?

Indeed, you can. Before the gates open on Saturday, Four Peaks Oktoberfest and the Frank Kush Youth Foundation will host Das Oktoberfest Runnin’ for the Brats. There are 10K, 5K and 1-mile race options, and participants are encouraged to don their Bavarian best. The races have staggered starts, beginning with the 10K at 8 a.m. Registration fees range from $25 to $45 and include a T-shirt, 1-liter Munich replica stein and admission to the Four Peaks Oktoberfest on Saturday.

A one-hour, all-levels hatha yoga flow class will be offered on Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 a.m. on the east lawn of the park, led by Spirit of Yoga and Southwest Institute of Healing Arts.

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Bavarian attire is encouraged at Four Peaks Oktoberfest.
Alexandra Gaspar

What should I wear?

Bavarian attire such as lederhosen and dirndls is encouraged, as is casual attire. While this year's event will feature a large tented beer hall, akin to the experience in Munich, the outdoor areas are largely unshaded, so bring a hat and sunscreen. Because activities and food and beer tents are spread across the park, wear comfortable shoes for walking
around on the grass.

What can I bring?

All patrons wanting to imbibe must show a valid ID at the entrance and wear a provided 21+ wristband. Clear bags and single-compartment bags are allowed; there is no size limit.

What’s not allowed at the event?

Don't bring backpacks, dogs or other pets (though service animals and racing weenies are welcomed), weapons of any kind, illegal drugs, medical or recreational marijuana, your own alcohol, coolers or beverage containers, glass containers of any kind, fireworks or explosives, lawn chairs, laser pointers, loud noisemakers such as air horns, drones, umbrellas, skateboards, in-line skates, bicycles or motorized vehicles of any kind.
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