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Chicago Picnic Theme: Oktoberfest Picnic

This year, celebrate summer with an Oktoberfest-themed picnic.

Originating in Munich in 1810, as a royal wedding celebration, Oktoberfest has transformed into the world’s largest festival hosting nearly 6 million annual visitors. We have some ideas to help transform your Chicago venue into an outdoor German carnival complete with the finest food, drink and décor.

Planning an Oktoberfest Picnic

Guest Invitations

oktoberfest invitation

Once you have reserved your venue and late-September/early-October date, you are ready to design your Oktoberfest invitations. We suggest using traditional images from vintage German postcards, German flag colors and iconic beer steins. Make it fun by cordially inviting your guests in German with the phrase, “Sie sind herzlich eingeladen.”

As for the dress code, why not encourage guests to wear Bavarian costumes? Men can wear customary lederhosen and the women can wear their best barmaid and tavern maiden costumes. And do not forget the accessories! Felt alpine hats, Tyrolean jackets and dirndls put the finishing touches on the costumes.

Bavarian Décor

oktoberfest decor

Your Oktoberfest picnic will be as thriving as the real festival in Munich’s Theresienwiese meadow. Most Oktoberfest picnic color schemes will have blue and white to reflect the colors of the Bavarian flag, but you can also use the German flag colors of gold, red and black.

Whichever color scheme you choose, weave them into these Oktoberfest picnic decoration ideas:

  • Large tents. Seating up to 8,000 guests, the tents in Munich are a hallmark of Oktoberfest. Let your picnic tents take center stage by decorating them with colorful balloons, banners and flags.
  • Traditional tablecloths. Lay checkered light blue and white table linens across long picnic tables.
  • Beer stein centerpieces. Dress a table with large glass or porcelain mugs filled with flowers. You could also detail them with Oktoberfest or German flags.

Oktoberfest Activities

oktoberfest activitites

Music always gets the party started. Hire a folk bank to play polka music or brass band tunes. You could even hand out kazoos to all of your guests to play while swinging to the beats. Some other traditional Oktoberfest activities include:

  • Oktoberfest beads. Let guests make their own beads or give them classic, green Alpine hats to wear during the picnic. Beer mugs with event details etched into them would also be a great party favor to remind guests of a memorable party!
  • Beer barrel race. Find out who can roll a beer barrel or keg the fastest across the lawn. And, of course, have a grand prize for the winner.
  • Chess tournaments. Tents dedicated to chess tournaments are a great way for guests to relax and enjoy their beer in true German fashion. You may also set up a giant chessboard to host the championship round and serve as a backdrop for pictures.
  • Yodeling contest. From voting for their favorite contestant to showing off their yodeling skills, every guest will have some laughs participating in this German activity.

Authentic Oktoberfest Cuisine

oktoberfest cuisine

A Tasty Catering picnic always includes creative entrees but nothing says Oktoberfest better than a juicy German Bratwurst and a whole roasted pig.

Our feast also includes:

  • 1/3 lb. Black Angus burgers
  • Jumbo Angus hot dogs
  • Veggie burgers
  • German potato salad
  • Rolls

We can also provide pretzel rolls upon request. Do not worry about the mustard selection, as it is a staple in our set of Oktoberfest condiments.

Beer, Beer and More Beer

oktoberfest beer

Ozapft is! Tap the keg because German beer is the star of the Oktoberfest-themed picnic. The cooler September and October weather in Chicago provides the perfect setting for breweries to showcase their stronger and darker flavors like Sam Adams Octoberfest. If you are not sure which beers your guests may like, we can serve a sampler.

And as always, we offer non-alcoholic options such as an apple spritzer.

Our core values ensure superior service and quality ingredients at affordable prices. If you are interested in our Chicago Oktoberfest catering backed by 25 years of experience, contact us online or by phone, (847) 593-2000.

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