This Saturday, Oct. 4, Backpocket Brewing will transform the Coralville Marriott exhibit center into a Munich-inspired beer hall for their Oktoberfest celebration.
Traditional, 1-liter beer steins will be sold and attendees will have the choice of filling their’s with Backpocket’s Oktobefest beer, Hawktoberfest, Jackknife Pale Ale or the brewery’s kölsch. Smaller, 16-ounce cups will also be sold. Two bands will provide music on the legendary tailgating venue the Magic Bus, and German-style food — including bratwurst, sauerkraut, spaetzle, schnitzel, pretzels and german potato salad — will be available.
Backpocket co-owner and brewer Jake Simmons said the idea of an Oktoberfest beer hall in Iowa City/Coralville first came to him four years ago while attending Oktoberfest in Munich. Though he did not understand the words to the German folk songs, the fun that 15,000 other revelers were having — drinking, eating, singing and swaying to the music — was easily translatable.
“It was probably the coolest place I have ever drank beer in my life,” he said.
The goal Saturday night is to recreate that atmosphere and offer an authentic Oktoberfest experience for just one night. In addition to the traditional glass steins, Simmons says the exhibit center will be decorated with banners much like the beer halls in Munich. Long tables will be set up around the stage for revelers to eat, drink and be merry.
The fun begins at 3 p.m and will last until midnight. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the Backpocket taproom or online. Simmons said attendees are welcome to bring their own 1-liter steins. Steins purchased at the event can also be brought back to the brewery and filled for $8 throughout October.