Vancouver Oktoberfest at the Vancouver Alpen Club in October is the Lower Mainland’s original and arguably most authentically German Oktoberfest event.
It’s also one of (if not the) most fun and festive Oktoberfest event in BC.
Vancouver Oktoberfest 2017
Vancouver Oktoberfest at the Alpen Club is a series of weekend beer festival-style events featuring German food, German beer, live music and dancing in October.
The festival takes place on the first three Fridays and Saturdays of October, and in 2017 it happens on the weekends of October 6-7, 13-14 and 20-21.
Doors open at 7:30 and the place starts to fill up by around 9 pm (plus or minus).
You can tell that the Vancouver Oktoberfest event is a pretty good rendition of the original world-famous Munich festival when you notice that the majority of people attending are of Germanic descent. Yes, those Germans like to have fun, they love their beers, and they celebrate the season seriously at the Alpen Club!
For details about the Vancouver Alpen Club’s Oktoberfest celebrations, see below. For information about other similar events in the Lower Mainland, click Vancouver Oktoberfest Events.
The Vancouver Oktoberfest event takes place at the Vancouver Alpen Club in a large and festively-decorated beer hall-type room at 4875 Victoria Drive. The venue is just south of Kingsway and a 5-minute drive east of Mountain View Cemetery.
In the hall there are rows of tables, a large open dance floor, a bar at one end of the room, a stage for the band, a room where food is served and an area with a balcony overlooking the hall upstairs.
TIP: Upstairs there is a photo booth where you can put on silly hats and other accessories and get your photo taken for free with your friends.
Vancouver Oktoberfest is a beer hall, adults-only event, so participants need to be age 19+.
Admission costs $35 plus taxes, or $75 for a VIP ticket that includes a selection of German foods and some beer.
To buy tickets in 2017, click Oktoberfest Vancouver.
What to Expect
At the Vancouver Oktoberfest event expect to see a fairly large hall with rows of long tables, a good-sized dance floor and lots of merry people drinking from beer steins and having a great time. A fair number of participants are in lederhosen (for the men) and dirndl dresses (for the ladies), but the majority are in their everyday clothes. The beer hall is festively decorated and the band is amazing.
At the event, as the evening progresses, the dance floor starts to fill up, the energy in the room gets thoroughly festive and before long you feel like you’re in a real Munich beer hall!
Vancouver Oktoberfest attracts a crowd of mixed ages (but primarily in the 25 to 55 age range), and is a favourite place for German Canadians. The venue holds up to 350 people and on most nights of the 6-day event the place hits capacity.
There is a bit of DJ time at Vancouver Oktoberfest, but most of the music is live. The Continentals are a talented 5-member band (who don’t always wear lederhosen), and their music ranges from traditional German beer festival tunes to famous hits from the 1930s to the 1970s and beyond.
At Vancouver Oktoberfest the Alpen Plattlers provide an entertaining dance performance mid-evening. It’s a fun, high-energy show and a great addition to the night.
German Food and Drink
The Vancouver Alpen Club Oktoberfest event features a good selection of authentic German food and drink. There’s schnitzel, bratwurst, pork hocks, Bavarian meatloaf, sauerkraut and pretzels. One of our favourite menu items there is the veggie strudel, and the Austrian kaiserschmarn dessert is delicious!
Menu prices are all fairly reasonable. In 2017 pretzels are about $3.50, bratwurst on a bun with sauerkraut is $9.50, and the schnitzel with potato salad costs $12.00.
Beers on tap include Erdinger Weibbeir (a white wheat beer), Erdinger Dunkel (a dark brown ale) and Erdinger Festbier (a seasonal beer brewed for the traditional German autumn festival of Volkfest). All three are delicious, from Germany and cost about $8 per stein.
Other beverages at the bar include Krombacher Pils, Ayinger Festbier and a selection of German wines, all for around $8, plus Jagermeister and a plum brandy for $6-ish, and soft drinks for around $2.
About the Alpen Club
Founded in 1935, the Vancouver Alpen Club is a private club and cultural organization that has its own German restaurant – the Deutsches Haus – that’s open to the public.
The Alpen Club and its German restaurant are located at 4875 Victoria Drive in Vancouver.
Below is some advice to help you make the most out of your Vancouver Oktoberfest experience.
- TIP # 1: There is free on-street parking in the area. You may need to drive down a couple of side streets though to find it, and the later you arrive the farther you’ll need to go.
- TIP # 2: Go with a group of friends. The more the merrier! And don’t forget to invite someone willing to be the designated driver or at least share the cost of your taxi ride home!
- TIP # 3: Especially if going on a Saturday, book online in advance. The slowest day of the season is typically the first Friday, especially if it coincides with the Thanksgiving Weekend, but even it attracts a sizeable crowd. The second and third Saturdays, meanwhile, typically sell out a good two or more weeks in advance!
- TIP # 4: Especially if you go with a large group, don’t arrive too late if you all want to sit together. Doors open at 7:30 pm and the place starts to fill up by around 9 o’clock.
For details about other Oktoberfest events, click Oktoberfest in Metro Vancouver.
For a list of other things to do in the Lower Mainland, check out any of the following:
- Vancouver October Calendar
- Festivals & Events Calendar
- Thanksgiving in the Lower Mainland
- Autumn in the Metro Vancouver
- Halloween in the Lower Mainland