Oktoberfest means wearing lederhosen, drinking beer, eating Jägerschnitzel, and stein hoisting! If you want to hold a contest at your next event, here's how to do it. We've been attending American Oktoberfests for many years and here's our list of the best and easiest games for your Oktoberfest party.

Oktoberfest Games:

The Stein Hoist, Beer Stein Holding or "Masskrugstemmen"

stein-hold-placement.jpgAccording to the US Steinholding Association, Masskrugstemmen, or beer Steinholding, is a relatively new sport in America, but it's popularity has been growing quickly. Here's everything you need to know about the world's greatest Fest-Sport.

Here are the rules for the stein hoist:

1. Fill a large glass stein with water, about 90% full, or to the top marker on the stein.
2. Competitors should hold the stein by the handle only - no wrapping around the glass or placing a thumb over the top of the handle or glass. (Photos courtesy of ussteinholding.com)

3. Competitors must keep their arm straight out, not lifted, not lowered, not to the side, and their elbow must remain straight.
4. If any liquid spills or the arm leaves the 90º position, the competitor is out.

That's it! Most rounds will last 3-6 minutes.

German Costume Contest

When you hold and Oktoberfest party in America, a small number of people will likely show up wearing traditional Bavarian costumes. Bring them up and have the crowd vote!


Chicken Dance Off

Get your wings flapping and your body moving! The person with the best moves will be crowned our Chicken Dance victors! Select judges or an emcee who will determine the victor for each round based on their interpretation of the classic moves.

Grain/Barley Toss Contest

Gather a few bags of grain or barley and place into sacks that can be used to hold the bag. Set a starting line and measure out every 5 feet up to 20 feet. Have contestants toss the bag without touching or crossing the starting line. Measure how far the bag went (by the farhest part of the bag). The contestant who has the longest throw wins!

Yodeling Contest

Say it with me, "Little old lady whoooo!" That's how easy it is and your crowd will love being a part of the contest or just watching others. Line them up and let each contestant give thier best yodel impression! Have the crowd vote by applause.

Musical Kegs

If you've played musical chairs as a kid , the rules are the same, except you use kegs or stumps as chairs. It's nore fun to have a live German band play the music!

  • Play the music and have the players walk around the perimeter of the chair circle.
  • When the music stops, everyone must immediately sit in a chair.
  • The one person left standing is out.
  • Remove another chair and continue until only one person is left.

Beer Keg Race

Gather empty full-sized kegs for rolling. Mark a starting line and have something to turn around at on the other end of the playing area (hay bales work great). Get a baseball bat for each competitor.

Each contestant starts behind the starting line behind a keg. They spin around 8 times with the baseball bat on their forehead, and the bat on the ground (think "dizzy bats"). The contestant must roll their keg around the hay bale or marker, then back to the starting line.

Alternatively: Two-contestant teams roll a keg from the start line, spins it 180 degrees past the the straw bale, then roll the keg back past the start line as fast as possible. One contestant must be on each end of the keg – no solo rolling is allowed. The kegs must be rolled. Carrying will result in disqualification.

To Win: The contestant or team with the lowest time & no violations will win.


Keg Holding Contest

Most breweries have a plethora of empty pony kegs lying around. Gather them up and have your strongest guests hold it out in front of them until they can no longer hold it. They need to be able to hold it straight out without dipping or rising their arms. Use your judgement as to who wins!