Oktoberfest is brewing up a batch of fun Oct. 9 at the new Rotary Amphitheater in Cerise Park, which will be open in time for the event.
As is tradition, All Points Transit organized the event as one of its main fundraisers, with several sponsors like the City of Montrose, Telluride Express and Peak Professionals. The event returns after cancelling last year due to COVID and will be celebrating its 16th season.
Ashley Pietak, the city’s community events coordinator, said that the All Points Transit event team reached out to her with a “pie in the sky” idea of resuming the annual festival at the new amphitheater, pending an early completion of construction. Cerise Park was already booked in case the new structure wasn’t complete in time and the city gave the final confirmation on Sept. 1 to move forward.
“We are excited to see such a longstanding community event and fundraiser for a great Montrose resource like All Points Transit be the first event at the venue, and we know that the events team has made all the arrangements for a great event,” said Pietak of the event, adding that completion comes ahead of the originally slated deadline Nov. 1.
Workers are still in the process of making finishing touches on the amphitheater this week and the site is still closed to the public, but construction fencing will be removed a day or two before the event.
Oktoberfest is slated to be chock-full of local brews, including beer, wine, cider and seltzers. Live music featuring the Oompah Band, Cousin Curtiss, Zolopht and Iron Horse will blast from the new stage, complete with a costume contest and $100 prize, stein hoisting, stein relays, circus performers and other activities.
Local favorites like Colorado Boy, Two Rascals and Horsefly, as well as regional breweries participating, such Ouray, Stoik and Palisade will be in attendance.
Some Front Range breweries will also be represented, including Avery Brewing, Crooked Stave Artisans and Odell Brewing. High Country Beverage distributing will be out with a wide selection of beverages to sample.
“We had a lot of fun putting on the “Oktoberfest at Home” event last year! But nothing compares to celebrating Oktoberfest in person. Of course we are thrilled to be back and hosting this community party at the new amphitheater,” said Sarah Curtis, All Points Transit executive director and organizer for the event.
Curtis added that Oktoberfest has been hosted for a decade now at Centennial Plaza, but the opportunity to move plans to the new structure was a great one. The events team made two separate event plans for Cerise Park一one for the amphitheater and one without.
All proceeds from Oktoberfest go directly into APT operations, supporting the delivery of rides for older adults, persons with disabilities and others in need of transit.
“Most federal and state transit grants require a “local match” contribution,” said Curtis. “We actually use dollars raised at Oktoberfest as local match funds for federal and state grants. This means dollars raised at Oktoberfest are leveraged four times over to provide service in our community.”
APT provides bus route services and door-to-door services in the Montrose areas, most passengers relying on the transit service to travel to and from medical appointments, the grocery store and anywhere else they need to go.
General admission tickets are on presale for $35 but are $45 at the gate. Access without an alcohol pass costs $20, but children 12 and under can enter for free. Standard tickets include beer tasting, live music and all festival activities, but do not include food. There will be food vendors available to festival guests to purchase and the Montrose Water Factory will be on-site to keep everyone hydrated, said Curtis.
Catered food is included in the VIP tent, with two tickets $250 at cost.
Curtis advises attendees to walk or bike if they’re able to ensure parking space is available for people with mobility challenges off Shane’s Way, but other possible parking options include Riverbottom and McNeil Fields, which are roughly a half mile walk or bike ride from the amphitheater.
Telluride Express is providing safe rides home from the event, free of charge, beginning at 3 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased online at https://bit.ly/3ol2RXg.
Updates can be located at montrosebeerfest.com.
Cassie Knust is a staff writer for the Montrose Daily Press.