Despite canceling its annual Festhalle, the main feature of its annual Oktoberfest, Helen wants to celebrate its 50th anniversary in a big way.
With a history dating back to 1969, the Bavarian town of Alpine Helen-White County, about an hour and a half north of Atlanta, will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Oktoberfest—Helen’s biggest celebration and the longest-running Oktoberfest in the United States—with a parade beginning at noon on September 12 in downtown Helen.
While the Helen Chamber of Commerce has deemed it best to postpone their official 50th Oktoberfest festivities at the Festhalle until 2021, the City’s restaurants, shops, hotels and amusements will still be open and offering their own Oktoberfest fun for all beginning in September and running through October.
“Helen is doing everything possible to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus and wants visitors to know our town will be open for Oktoberfest celebrations in the bars and restaurants, even though the Festhalle (Helen’s Oktoberfest music venue) will not be able to open due to the current State of Georgia live performance venue guidelines,” adds Jerry Brown, Executive Director of the Alpine Helen-White County Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The parade is the perfect way to celebrate while remaining socially distant.”
Visitors are invited to experience the spirit of Oktoberfest as it moves through the city’s cobblestone streets and fresh mountain air—savor refreshing brews, authentic German eats and live music. During September and October there will be pop-up celebrations throughout the town with plenty of fun to be had by all. Businesses and restaurants are still open and visitors are welcome to explore the best of Alpine Helen-White County, which shows off autumn brilliance with fall color and cool mountain temps. While visiting, learn about the history of White County and the Chattahoochee River and embrace the city’s history with a two-mile out-and-back guided hike along the brand new Helen to Hardman Heritage Trail along with other trail adventures. Visit www.HelenChamber.com and www.HelenGa.org for more information about ways to commemorate Oktoberfest this year and save the date for a true 50th-anniversary celebration in 2021.