100 reasons to go to Dayton Art Institute’s Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest is always a huge celebration.

It’s the Dayton Art Institute’s 100th birthday this year, so there’s an even bigger reason to celebrate in 2019.

>> Insider’s guide to the Dayton Art Institute’s Oktoberfest

>> Beer cost WHAT at the first Oktoberfest? Beer cost WHAT at the first Oktoberfest?

The three-day Oktoberfest celebration, which got its start in 1972, continues today on the museum grounds at 456 Belmonte Park N. in Dayton.

>> PHOTOS: Did we spot you at last year’s Oktoberfest?

With some help from event organizers and museum staff, here are 100 things to love about the Dayton Art Institute’s Oktoberfest!

1. It’s the museum’s largest annual fundraiser and has raised more than $7.5 million for the museum through the years.

2. Community spirit: More than 2,000 people volunteer their time to help run Oktoberfest.

3. Brats and metts.

4. Schnitzel.

5. It was voted Best Festival in Dayton.com’s latest Best of Dayton contest.

6. The head-in-hole photo stations (especially after a few brews).

7. The Rubi Girls pouring beer at Preview Party.

8. Oktoberfest commemorative beer steins.

9. Craft artisans who you won’t find at any other event in Dayton.

10. Beers you won’t find anywhere else.

11. Bahama Mamas.

12. Sauerkraut balls!

13. The cream puffs!

14. Those fries!

15. Beer cost 10 cents in 1972, the first year Oktoberfest was held (sorry, folks, it doesn’t cost that anymore!).

16. The event was started by the DAI’s Associate Board to “encourage the community to have a fun weekend at its museum and have a chance to buy good art objects,” according to a 1972 Journal-Herald newspaper article.

17. It’s the DAI’s 100th birthday this year — that alone is a reason to come toast Dayton’s gem at Oktoberfest!

18. Kettle corn pairs well with beer.

19. Potato salad.

20. So. Much. Food!

21. So. Much. Beer! 6 stations of it!

22. Community spirit: The DAI’s Associate Board — a volunteer group consisting of 32 couples — devotes a full year to planning and organizing the festival.

23. Dozens of local businesses support the festival every year as sponsors.

24. Those sunsets on Friday and Saturday night!

25. The view of downtown Dayton.

26. Posing for photos with Leo the Lion.

27. Free admission to the museum galleries.

28. See an amazing re-creation of the Mona Lisa in the current exhibition “Mona Lisa Today.”

29. See some really cool and rare historic photos of Dayton by William Preston Mayfield.

30. Polka, polka, polka — non-stop polka and German music in the food tent.

31. This event truly has something for everyone!

32. Escaping the office to eat at the Lederhosen Lunch on Friday.

33. Kicking off the weekend right at the Friday night Preview Party.

34. A Preview Party ticket includes free beer (and wine)!

35. “Cask tappings” featuring limited-edition craft beers you can’t find anywhere else!

36. The new Oktoberfest “Cantina” will be selling hard seltzers this year.

37. It’s not just about the beer. You can get amazing wines, too!

38. Two tents full of amazing art for sale — more than 60 artisans attending!

39. Eric Wright, who won this year’s Art in the City “People’s Choice Award,” will be one of the artisans at Oktoberfest.

40. Hearing the Route 161 Happy Wanderers perform The Dayton Polka, a song they wrote specifically for DAI’s Oktoberfest, on Sunday afternoon.

41. Face painting for the kids.

42. Tons of family fun for all ages at the ACCO Brands FamilyFest!

43. The Lego building challenge at the ACCO Brands FamilyFest — try to build your own Lego DAI!

44. Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout.

45. Several Ohio beers are featured this year.

46. All the creative Oktoberfest outfits people wear!

47. The ultimate tailgate party in the TV Cave tent.

48. Watching The Ohio State Buckeyes play in PRIME TIME on Saturday night!

49. The Bengals and Steelers DON’T play on Sunday (trust us, that’s a good thing this year).

50. The Browns DO play on Sunday (the jury’s out on whether that’s a good or bad thing).

51. Photo opp in the giant Leinenkugel’s chair!

52. All of the annual Oktoberfest T-shirts.

53. More than 1 million people have visited Oktoberfest since it began.

54. It’s a fundraiser that helps support everything the DAI does all year long.

55. Oktoberfest typically raises more than $400,000 for the museum.

56. Since it began, Oktoberfest has raised more than $7.5 million to support Dayton’s art museum!

57. DAI Director Michael Roediger’s authentic German lederhosen

58. No need to hunt for parking — you can take FREE shuttles from downtown and near the UD Marriott.

59. You can bike to Oktoberfest and use one of the free bicycle racks.

60. If you’re craving a Starbucks pumpkin spice latte … you can get one at the museum’s Leo Bistro!

61.Bella Sorella Pizza is coming this year!

62. A place for a girls night, guys night, date night or family afternoon!

63. Weihenstephaner. Drink it, don’t try to spell it.

64. There’s Miller Lite if you’re afraid to try new things.

65. It’s the perfect place to try a new beer.

66. Hefeweiss.

67. Caribbean street food from Dayton Island Grill.

68. Brewdog brews.

69. The “You’ve Been Spotted” Oktoberfest photo gallery every year on Dayton.com.

70. Amazing people watching near or on the dance floor.

71. Calling in Dead hot dog at Zombie Dogz food truck.

72. Soaking up beer with a Hamburger Wagon slider.

73. Homemade noodles.

74. Young’s Dairy will be there serving its famous ice cream.

75. Schmidt’s.

76. The tempting smell of Bavarian Roasted Nuts.

77. Apple strudel.

78. Elephant ears.

79. Giant soft pretzels.

80. Jackie O’s!

81. Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale.

82. Cigars!

83. Shopping with a cold brew in hand.

84. Warsteiner Oktoberfest.

85. Crispin Orchard Apple Cider.

86. Leinenkugel.

87. Weihenstephaner.

88. Oktoberfest hats.

89. “48 years of Art, Cheer and Beers.”

90. Music by Cherry on Top, Full Frontal, Jah Soul, Spungewurthy and more!

91. Dayton could use a beer.

92. Oktoberfest in September.

93. You don’t have to travel to Munich.

94. Preview Party is one of the best parties of the year

95. Take a half-day Friday and drink your lunch (admission is free).

96. 40 different craft and international beers.

97. Cold beer tastes even better when it’s warm outside!

98. Pub fries!

99. El Meson will be there this year!

100. The DAI has given to this community for 100 years. That deserves a toast!


What: Dayton Art Institute Oktoberfest

When: Sept. 28-29, noon-11:30 a.m. Saturday, noon-7 p.m. Sunday

Where: Dayton Art Institute, 456 Belmonte Park N.

Cost: $5-$8 (advance), $7-$10 (at the gate)

More Info: 937-223-4ART or www.daytonartinstitute.org

Credit: Lynn Hulsey

Credit: Lynn Hulsey

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