By Mandy Gambrell
Photo credit: E.T. Fowler

It’s that time of year to be thinking about the fun of upcoming end-of-summer festivals, and the thought of attending Oktoberfests has our mouths watering.

 
Who doesn’t love a juicy bratwurst covered in sauerkraut, a thick tasty pretzel, a giant creampuff and of course … a stein full of ice-cold beer?
 
In Hamilton, Oktoberfest is a major deal: It’s always conducted at the Liberty Home Association on Ohio 128. “Up the hill,” locals will tell you. The event boasts a huge amount of seating because the focus is on the food: Members of the Liberty Home Association cook massive amounts of German food to fill your plates and keep bellies full.
 
Hamilton’s Oktoberfest event has games for all ages, so children are as entertained as adults. It also features a stage with live music and room for dancing.
 
It’s a Labor Day staple: The event will be over the holiday weekend, Aug. 30-Sept. 1. Admission is $3, and those 14 and younger are free.
 
In Seven Mile, Oktoberfest is truly an event that brings the village together. This year’s event is slated for Aug. 9 and 10 and features live music both days: The Route 161 Happy Wanderers on Friday and Thunder Bay on Saturday.
 
Food at the Seven Mile event will be vast and includes Glier’s Meats and Servatii Cream Puffs. There are games for kids to play, too.
 
Seven Mile’s Oktoberfest takes place at the community park on Walnut Street.
 
One of the biggest Oktoberfest celebrations in the region is Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, and this year’s will be Sept. 20-22. The annual event takes place on Second and Third Streets between Walnut and Elm (for out-of-towners, that’s very close to the Cincinnati Bengals stadium in the downtown Cincinnati area).
 
The Zinzinnati event includes the “World’s Largest Chicken Dance,” a wiener dog race and of course lots of music and food — there are five different beer gardens. There is also a brat eating competition.
 
Also considered a big Cincinnati-area German celebration, Oktoberfest at Germania is scheduled for Aug 23-25 at the Germania Society on West Kemper Road. This year, the Germania Oktoberfestcelebrates its 49th anniversary.
 
It costs $5 for admission, and parking is free.
 
Looking for other German festivals? There are plenty in Ohio:
• Oktoberfest in July in Willoughby
• Brats and Crafts Festival in Columbus
• Germanfest Picnic in Dayton
• German Fest in Amherst
• German-American Festival in Oregon
 
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