The ninth annual Oktoberfest Northwest will be held Friday through Sunday at the Washington State Fairgrounds in Puyallup.
Event-goers will have opportunities to compete in the 5-kilometer Stein Dash, Hammerschlagen and Beer Pong. Manuela Horn, the “Oktoberfest Swing Girl,” also will be there to entertain. Free entry will be available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday.
This is the second year for the 5K Stein Dash, which has become one of the most popular activities. Runners who register to participate will receive an Oktoberfest stein to run with and a free beer at the finish line. Under-age runners will receive a root beer when they complete the race.
The 5K will begin and end at the fairgrounds. The finish line will be at Pierce County’s largest beer garden.
“It’s super fun,” Media Director Cindy Stohr of the Stein Dash. It was really great setting it up. We were honestly just looking for something for Sunday that would add to it.”
Registration will be open online until midnight on Friday, and it will be available during the celebration until the start of the race. The 5K Stein Dash will start at 11:30 a.m. Sunday.
Oktoberfest Northwest will open its Sunday celebration at 9:45 a.m. to feature the Seattle Seahawks’ football game on two 50-inch plasma TVs and an 8-foot-tall screen. The Sports Haus will have several couches for lounging and beer pong games for those 21 and older. The Washington Huskies’ football game will be shown Saturday night at 7:30 p.m.
In addition to beer pong, Hammerschlagen — Oktoberfest Northwest’s original nail-hitting game — will return to the event. Participants will have an opportunity to compete for the title of Hammerschlagen champion and a chance to win $200 and a beer stein. The qualifiers will be held on Friday and Saturday.
“It’s become so popular,” Stohr said. “It’s really, really fun. “Hammerschlagen has become the trademark of Oktoberfest Northwest.”
Manuela Horn will bring her yodeling talents to the weekend-long event. She is actively involved in Oktoberfest during family hours and will focus on more traditional yodeling music and dance songs.
Oktoberfest Northwest becomes a 21-and-older event after 7 p.m., and Horn will adapt her yodeling skills to popular top 40 songs. Horn has been featured on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”
The celebration maintains a traditional Oktoberfest style by keeping it family friendly.
“We really try with this event to make it an authentic Oktoberfest,” Stohr said.
There will be a number of children’s activities offered during the all-ages family hours. Free pumpkin decorating, a root beer garden and a kids’ version of Hammerschlagen will be available all weekend.
Children also will have opportunities to get their faces painted for free on Saturday and Sunday.
The Running of the Wieners, a competitive dachshund race, will return this year. The competition, hosted by Weiner Tales, a dachshund rescue organization, will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Attendees are encouraged to dress up for the weekend and the 5K Stein Dash. The German Corner shop will have steins, cookbooks and authentic German clothing for purchase.
Oktoberfest Northwest will be open from 11 a.m. to midnight on Friday and Saturday, and from 9:45 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.