A MAJOR beer festival is all set for a return to York later this year.

York’s traditional Bavarian beer festival, Yorktoberfest, is returning to the Clocktower Enclosure at York Racecourse for a fourth successive year.

The event runs from Friday, October 18 to Saturday October 19 and on Friday and Saturday October 25-26.

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James Cundall, CEO of Jamboree Entertainment and event organiser said: “We will transform the giant marquee into a Bavarian festival scene, with rows of tables and benches down most of its 160m length, a performance stage, rustic carts full of wooden beer barrels, thatched wooden barns, flags galore and generally everything needed for a great night out.

“We are thrilled that Yorktoberfest has become so popular since its debut in 2021 and once again it promises evenings of hearty fun, with beer, a band and bratwurst, not to mention a sensational drag queen!  We’ll be announcing additional live entertainment in due course, so it’s time to get your friends together and start planning the party.”

York Press: There'll be traditional German food and entertainmentThere'll be traditional German food and entertainment

Yorktoberfest follows in the traditions of the first Oktoberfest staged in Munich in 1810, bringing all things Bavarian to a giant fully-styled beer tent in the Clocktower Enclosure at York Racecourse, as well as superb live entertainment.  

Returning this year is the internationally-acclaimed seven-piece live band, the Bavarian Strollers who will perform thigh-slapping, foot-stomping oompah tunes as well as feel-good disco classics. 

They have travelled the world bringing their unique take on oompah music to Bier Keller evenings, Oktoberfests, bars, parties and offices, and have appeared on BBC One, Channel 4, E4, Sky, Radio 5 Live as well as programmes such as Never Mind the Buzzcocks and Alan Carr Chatty Man. Their Bavarian table dances and German ‘prosit’ toasts make Yorktoberfest a memorable experience.

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Adding to the party and returning to the stage by popular demand will be international drag artist Velma Celli, the undisputed star of the show. 

Known as ‘the UK’s Queen of live vocal drag’, Velma has been charming audiences across the globe for the past 15 years, from Australia to New York, and from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival to London’s Hippodrome.  Velma takes the drag concept to whole new dizzy heights according to her alter-ego Ian Stroughair, a well-known name on the West End stage in his own right.

York Press: Velma Celli will be entertaining the crowdsVelma Celli will be entertaining the crowds

Dancing is encouraged, as it has been for over 200 years, as is the wearing of Lederhosen, Dirndls or any other fancy dress, with nightly competitions and prizes for the best dressed.

The event will have a strictly limited capacity, with specific opening times: Fridays and Saturdays from 7pm until 11pm, and daytime sessions on Saturdays from 1pm until 5pm.

Tickets go on sale today, (April 5) at 10am through www.ticketsource.co.uk/yorktoberfest.  Prices are £23 per person for standard and £33 for VIP, with an automatic early bird discount of £5 per ticket if booked before June 30. 

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