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NYC This Week: Raise a Glass for Oktoberfest

Here are the five coolest things to do in and around New York City this week

Unsurprisingly, it's all about the beer this week, with Bavarian bierhaus Zum Schneider hosting an Oktoberfest festival that includes oompah music and strongman competitions—and we don't just mean the servers carrying six steins at once. If you'd rather drink in the mountains, head to the Catskills: Hunter Mountain's Oktoberfest offers you the opportunity to escape the booze for the great outdoors... though that may depend on how you approach fishing or a round of golf. Non–beer drinkers can geek out at the craft coffee festival, and non-drinkers (period) can catch the opening of the dramatic Thérése Raquin on Broadway, or the closing of an exhibition on sneaker culture at the Brooklyn Museum

October 1 | Broadway opening night
Thérése Raquin
Actors often make the leap from stage to screen, and vice versa, and this production of Thérése Raquin marks Keira Knightley’s Broadway debut. Though she may have made a name for herself in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, this role is considerably more serious. Based on the 19th-century novel of the same name, Thérése Raquin is the dramatic story of an unhappy marriage, a tumultuous affair, betrayal, and guilt. If you aren’t familiar with the story, don’t look up spoilers ahead of time—the twists and turns will have you on the edge of your seat. The show is slated to run through January.
8 p.m. | Studio 54, 254 West 54th St., New York | (212) 719-1300 | From $47 | website

October 2–4 | Beer steins
Munich on the East River
Don’t fret if you can’t make it to Germany for Oktoberfest this year; New York’s own Bavarian bierhaus, Zum Schneider, will be hosting its second annual celebration. With German-speaking staff dressed in dirndls and lederhosen, Oktoberfest beers on tap, live oompah music, and even strongman competitions under a tent that can fit close to 1,000 people, this rivals Munich’s celebrations in spirit if not scope. Should you miss out, or want to come back for more, the festivities continue next weekend, too.
Times vary | Zum Schneider Outdoors Party Location (Solar One), 24–20 FDR Drive Service Rd. E., New York | From $25 | website

October 3 | Caffeine buzz
NYC Craft Coffee Festival
Maybe you know your cortado from your macchiato, but are you a true coffee connoisseur? If so, you might want to check out the NYC Craft Coffee Festival, where you can sample the goods from 20 coffee roasters and purveyors. Whether you’re into cold brew or cappuccino, you’ll be able to geek out over crema and coffee regions, or debate the virtues of Chemex versus French press with fellow aficionados. There will also be tasty treats on hand to complement that cup of Joe, as well as live entertainment.
9 a.m–4:30 p.m. (four sessions) | Villain, 50 N. 3rd St., Brooklyn | From $35 | website

AFAR Local is published every Wednesday, so check back for insider updates on restaurant openings, festivals, exhibitions, shows, weekend escapes, and more. Planning a trip? The AFAR guide to New York has you covered.

October 4 | Exhibition last chance
The Rise of Sneaker Culture
You may be surprised to find sneakers in an art museum, but the Rise of Sneaker Culture, which closes at the Brooklyn Museum this weekend, puts these shoes on a pedestal—quite literally. The exhibit, which originated at Toronto’s idiosyncratic Bata Shoe Museum, traces the history of the sneaker from humble beginnings to global infatuation. Examples from the archives of major sneaker manufacturers, high-end fashion designers, and artists are on display, as well as documentary footage, design drawings, photos, and more.
11 a.m.–6 p.m. | Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn | (718) 638–5000 | $16 suggested donation | website

Weekend Escape
Oktoberfest at Hunter Mountain
If you really want to immerse yourself in the Oktoberfest spirit, head to the Catskills for Hunter Mountain’s Oktoberfest. You don’t have to stay at the family resort to attend the free festival, but it’s certainly an excellent option and gets you easy access to the live entertainment, food, and drink that the festival offers. In addition to the festival, you can enjoy zip-lining, hiking, fishing, golfing, and more, both at the resort and in the beautiful surrounding area. Last Chance Cheese and Antiques Cafe in nearby Tannersville is a solid spot for lunch, and a good place to pick up cheese and other goodies for a picnic. And yes, they do have antiques, too.

A native New Yorker, Katherine is a freelance food and travel writer who has eaten her way across the globe and is always on the lookout for her next great meal. She is an avid reader, insatiable traveler, sometimes photographer, and mom to inquisitive toddler.