September 28th, 8:30am-7:00pm
Municipal Park, Hays, Kansas

Oktoberfest 2018

The Volga German Society Oktoberfest is an annual celebration of the German Russians of Ellis County. It is held at Municipal Park on the Friday of FHSU’s Homecoming Weekend. The festival includes various activities and booths that provide food, crafts, beer and musical entertainment. The Volga German Society, established in 1974, promotes the heritage of the German immigrants through the annual Oktoberfest.


A Hays tradition since 1973.

In the 1870s farmers from the Volga River basin in Russia began migrating across the globe to find freedom and prosperity.  These families had settled in Russia in the eighteenth century after leaving Germany.  As they sought fertile lands and peaceful living, they carried their language, religion, and culture with them.  The families who settled in Ellis County labored in the fields and braved winters on the plains.  They also celebrated with food, drink, and music.

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A gathering for the whole community.

Oktoberfest in Hays boasts a wide range of traditional food, music, and drink.  As always the festival coincides with homecoming weekend at Fort Hays State University.

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The unique sights, sounds, and tastes of Ellis County.

The spirit of the community can be felt in its traditional dishes and songs found at Oktoberfest. Bierocks, those delicious pastries filled with savory beef and cabbage, perfectly fit one’s hand while the other is occupied with a locally-brewed beer.  Other traditional dishes, such as green bean and dumpling soup and bratwurst, can be found while polka pours from the pavilion tent.  Experience the traditional tastes and sounds of Hays at this year’s Oktoberfest.


Gathering local ingredients, crafts, and culture to the table.

Oktoberfest celebrates the land and the people who have labored on it for generations.  We take pride in presenting local foods and crafts.

Celebrating our community and its traditions.

Support Volga German culture, history, and community.

There are numerous ways in which you can participate in the Oktoberfest celebration.

Learn more about becoming a supporter and participant

German Market