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Oktoberfest Returns to Tussey Mountain

Strap on your lederhosen and bust out the beer steins. Tussey Mountain’s Oktoberfest is back this weekend for another installment of the beloved fall tradition in the Centre Region.

Tussey Mountain’s German-inspired festival will take place from 5:30 to 10 p.m. on Friday. The event will feature live entertainment, a handful of local food vendors and even competitive steinholding — the traditional Bavarian strength contest that continues growing in popularity.

Smitty’s Polka Band, a New York City-based variety act, will headline Tussey Mountain’s Oktoberfest with a setlist covering German and Bavarian folk songs, plus classic rock and pop hits. The Bavarian Stompers, who proudly put the “‘oom’ in ‘oompah’ and the ‘pah’ in ‘pah-rty,'” also will perform.

Local vendors Doan’s Bones Barbecue, Carl’s Crazy Corn, Brazilian Munchies and Rosie’s Pierogies will sell food throughout the event. Tussey Mountain’s concessions stands will also offer “authentic Oktoberfest fare.”

Tussey Mountain’s concession stands use tickets for all on-site food and beverages. They will be available for purchase at the event with cash only. Concession tickets never expire and can be used for future Tussey Mountain events.

Perhaps the most notable highlight of Tussey Mountain’s festival is its steinholding competition, which this year will qualify for the U.S. Steinholding Association State Finals. The first-place winner from the men’s and women’s competitions can compete as finalists at the Pennsylvania State Steinholding Championship in Bethelem on Oct. 9. DJ Rick LaPean, who broadcasts with 105.9 QWiK Rock in Lock Haven, will host the Oktoberfest event as its guest emcee.

There is no fee to participate in Tussey Mountain’s steinholding competition, although event admission is required. Interested participants should register at the gate between 5:30 and 7 p.m. Prizes for select winners include Tussey Mountain gift cards valued at up to $100.

Steinholding, also known as Masskrugstemmen, tasks contestants with holding a full, one-liter beer stein, often weighing about 5 pounds, in front of their bodies with a straight arm for as long as possible, all while maintaining good form. A full list of steinholding rules and information, including answers to frequently asked questions and training tips, is available online.

Tickets cost $10 before the event and $15 on Friday. Children 10 and under receive free admission alongside a ticketed adult. Tussey Mountain’s box office, located inside its information center near the lodge, will sell tickets on the day of the festival. Admission passes won’t be available at the gate, according to the event page.

Oktoberfest will continue rain or shine, and tickets are non-refundable. AccuWeather’s forecast currently calls for a sunny and cool day on Sept. 23, featuring a high of 59 degrees, a low of 42 and just a 6% chance of rain.

Guests are not allowed to bring coolers, pets or outside food and beverage to Tussey Mountain’s Oktoberfest. On-site camping and overnight parking are also prohibited.

For more information, visit tusseymountain.com/oktoberfest/ or the event’s Facebook page.