Didn’t go abroad? Never fear, you uncultured swine. While all of your friends in Europe are enjoying a healthy dose of schadenfreude every time they imagine you slugging your way down Locust, you can make our damp city feel exactly like that cute European hotel you swear you’re going to visit during Fall Break.

But you better start soon. Philly Oktoberfest starts on September 13th. Because we care, here’s your guide to celebrating Philly Oktoberfest in the most authentically German way possible. Anyway, if you squint enough, Philadelphia looks just like Munich.

Planning/Where to stay

Philly Oktoberfest is promising four raucous days of authentic fun at Brauhaus Schmitz, a “bierhalle” in the faraway European country called South Street. To ensure you don’t miss a moment of the fun, make sure you reserve your Airbnb at least a week in advance. Bonus points if you can rent from a man named Klaus, Hans, or Albrecht.


Finding the perfect dirndl or lederhosen to spend half of your abroad (sorry, semesterly) budget on is a must when attempting to blend in with the Deutsch. These festive costumes are worn daily by the German people—don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, and don’t get caught without one unless Klaus removed it with his own Hans.

The Day Of...

Your dirndl is on, and the big day is here. Munich is 6 hours ahead of Philadelphia, so for the most authentic experience possible, start lining up at 11:00 PM, or 5:00 AM Munich time. Stand in an imaginary line for hours to feel true solidarity with your buddies abroad before you enter the beer hall to start chugging overpriced steins. Even though the 17th is the only full day of Philly Oktoberfest, you’re not honoring the traditional aspect of this festival unless you park yourself outside of the beer hall with steins for all four days. Abroad pro–tip: If you see ANY table, you better be standing on it and posing for an instagram in a chugging motion before you can say “Fremdschämen.” Which is what the people watching you will feel.

Social Media

You can’t spell “proud” without most of the letters in “prost”. Post your best prost—take as many practice shots as you want—because YOGAO (You Only Go “Abroad” Once). The rest of the rules are simple: steins alone do not a profile picture make. Full lederhosen, full steins (at least three, all of which you will later steal), and a full squad will complete your ultimate Oktoberfest photographic proof.

At the end of the day, remember not to neglect the real Oktoberfest: OCR.

The Deets

Location: Brauhaus Schmitz, 718 South Street

Time: Nightly events Tuesday-Friday, 9/13-9/16, with a block party on Saturday at noon

Price: Free to attend, bring money for beer, and compete in the daily “liter lift” competitions for a chance to win $500 (and glory).


All comments eligible for publication in Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc. publications.