Longmonters get their lederhosen and dirndls on, Left Hand Brewing Foundation, or LHBF, has locked in the dates for this year’s Oktoberfest.
This year’s Oktoberfest will be held in Left Hand Brewing’s newly opened beer garden, rather than the traditional Roosevelt Park. COVID concerns and an abundance of caution motivated the change, according to Left Hand Brewing Foundation Executive Director Megan Mahar. The decision to move from Roosevelt Park was LHBF’s choice, to avoid encouraging thousands of people to gather in close proximity in the park.
“We really want to show our attendees and the community that even during these unpredictable times that LHBF can still put on a really fun and safe event that still supports our ultimate goal of raising funds and awareness for organizations in our community,” Mahar said.
Capacity for the Garden is much smaller, around 450 people, Mahar said. Keeping the event contained allows them to better manage the size across each day. To give opportunity to as many locals as possible, LHBF is extending the festivities across five days, September 22 through 26. The first three days, Wednesday through Friday, will be free of charge. Saturday and Sunday will cost $5 per person at the gate, and Mahar said tickets were not being sold in advance to allow for better management of capacity.
Each day of Oktoberfest will include live music and food vendors. Both Saturday and Sunday will host competitions for the best dressed attendees and stein holding, with prizes for each day. A typical Longmont Oktoberfest would see dozens of breweries and food vendors gathering in Roosevelt Park, but liquor licensing doesn’t allow for other alcohol sales at the Garden. Still, Mahar encouraged guests to check out the other Oktoberfest parties at breweries around town.
“While we can’t host the breweries on our campus, we still want to encourage and support them,” Mahar said. “We’re hoping we can all return to the traditional event in Roosevelt Park next year.”
Proceeds from Oktoberfest will benefit A Woman’s Work, a Longmont nonprofit serving local women in need. Mahar cited national issues in the male-dominated brewing industry, including unfair treatment and unequal pay for women, as one of the motivating factors in choosing the organization as this year’s beneficiary.
“We wanted to work with them because of the help they give to women in the area,” Mahar said. “We really appreciate their mission and passion toward helping women in need and not asking anything in return.”