Ober Gatlinburg to Host New Spring Festival: Maifest

Two German maypoles at Maifest.
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We’re excited to report that Ober Gatlinburg is bringing more German-themed fun to the Smoky Mountains! This spring, the amusement park in Gatlinburg, TN will host its first annual Maifest. Much like Ober Gatlinburg’s popular Oktoberfest celebration in the fall, Maifest will include German-style beer and time-honored traditions from the Old World. To help you make the most of your next vacation, Visit My Smokies has put together a convenient guide to the Ober Gatlinburg Maifest.

Ober Gatlinburg Maifest Dates and LocationThe Ober Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway on a spring day.

The Maifest at Ober Gatlinburg will run from Friday, May 4, 2018 – Sunday, May 6, 2018. All of the fun will be held at the Ober Gatlinburg Amusement Park, which is located at 1339 Ski Mountain Road, Gatlinburg, TN 37738.

The most convenient way to get to the amusement park is via the Ober Gatlinburg Aerial Tramway. This fun cable car ride takes passengers from downtown Gatlinburg straight to the top of Mt. Harrison. Along the way, guests will enjoy breathtaking views of the Great Smoky Mountains. The Aerial Tramway departs from 1001 Parkway, Gatlinburg, TN, 37738.

What to Expect at the Ober Gatlinburg Maifest

Maifest is a traditional celebration of the arrival of spring that has been observed in Germany since the 16th century. At the center of the festival is the maypole, a tree or pole located in the town square that is decorated with multicolored ribbons. A highlight of the festival is the maypole ceremony, in which villagers dance around the pole to bring themselves good fortune for the coming season.

A little girl with flowers in her hair dancing around the maypole.The Ober Gatlinburg Maifest will feature all of the hallmarks of the traditional German celebration, including an authentic maypole ceremony each day at 2 p.m. Other highlights of the festival at Ober include a beer garden, flower tent, face painting, children’s activities, and demonstrations by artisans from the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community.

Schulz Brau Beer Garden

The beer garden at the Ober Gatlinburg Maifest will be run by Schulz Brau Brewing Company of Knoxville, TN. This mom-and-pop business is owned and operated by the Schulz family (Wolfgang, Ilona, Nico, and Stefan), who is originally from Germany. Schulz Brau brews traditional German ales and lagers in accordance with the Reinheitsgebot, the German Beer Purity Law, which assures that their beers are of the highest quality.

Ober Uphill 5KWomen and men running a race.

On the second day of Maifest, Ober Gatlinburg will host a 5K race to benefit the Boys and Girls Club of the Smoky Mountains. Beginning at the Ober Gatlinburg downtown parking area, the race is an uphill trek along Ski Mountain Road up to the amusement park. For more details, visit the Ober Uphill 5K page on the Ober Gatlinburg website.

Ober Gatlinburg Maifest Schedule

Friday, May 4, 2018

  • 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Kinderland (Bounce Houses, Games, etc.)
  • 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Schulz Brau Beer Garden
  • 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Face Painter, Flower Tent, Artisan Tents
  • 2 p.m. – Maypole Ceremony

Saturday, May 5, 2018

  • 8 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. – Ober Uphill 5k
  • 9:30 a.m. – 10 a.m. – Awards & Schulz Brau Keg Tapping for 5K Runners
  • 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Schulz Brau Beer Garden
  • 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Kinderland (Bounce Houses, Games, etc.)
  • 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Face Painter, Flower Tent, Artisan Tents
  • 2 p.m. – Maypole Ceremony

Sunday, May 6, 2018

  • 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Kinderland (Bounce Houses, Games, etc.)
  • 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Schulz Brau Beer Garden
  • 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Face Painter, Flower Tent, Artisan Tents
  • 2 p.m. – Maypole Ceremony

For more information about Maifest, visit the official Ober Gatlinburg website.

Aerial view of Gatlinburg TN in the springMore Great Events in Gatlinburg

Want to stay up to date on all of the latest happenings in the Smoky Mountains? Bookmark our Gatlinburg Events Calendar, so you’ll always be in the loop!

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