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Winterlong brings Oktoberfest to Whitehorse

Steins are ready to be filled with brewery’s first fest lager
Meghan Marjanovic, who owns Wintering Brewing with her husband Marko, holds an Octoberfest stein. The brewery is hosting its first Octoberfest on Oct. 6. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)

Collector’s steins are ready for Winterlong’s first fest lager on Oct. 6 as the brewery in the Mount Sima subdivision gets ready to host its inaugural Oktoberfest event.

It’s something Meghan Marjanovic, who owns Winterlong with her husband Marko, said the brewery has wanted to do for a long time, but the timing has never worked out for the annual event that celebrates Bavarian culture.

“This year, everything fell into place,” Meghan said in a Sept. 28 interview at the brewery, adding it is fortunate gatherings like Oktoberfest can still happen in the Yukon with several other regions of the country putting in greater restrictions on gatherings due to rising COVID-19 cases.

When the Marjanovics realized an Oktoberfest was a possibility for 2021, they got to work planning the event and researching beer that would be best paired with the celebration.

“There was a little bit of Googling,” Meghan said.

Those who purchased beer tickets for Winterlong Brewing’s fire Oktoberfest will receive a collector’s stein with their beer. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)

The result is Festbier — a German-style lager Meghan described as a crisp, easy-drinking beer — that will be released at Winterlong’s Oktoberfest.

“We’re just waiting for it to be ready,” Meghan said, noting lagers take a couple of months to brew and, coupled with the time it took to get ingredients in, that means it will be ready early in the week of Oct. 6.

While Oktoberfest events are typically hosted toward the end of September, leading into October, Meghan said Winterlong is hosting its event a bit later due to the timing of the beer being ready.

She and Marko would have liked to host it as a weekend event, but with Thanksgiving coming up and the brewery wanting to keep it closer to Oct. 1, they decided to host it from 5 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 6.

Those who purchased a beer-included ticket (now sold out) will receive their Festbier in a collector’s stein they can take home, marking the 2021 Oktoberfest at Winterlong.

“It’s a nice dimbled glass,” Meghan said.

Along with the work that goes into brewing a new beer, Meghan has also worked to plan the festivities, bringing in others from the community to decorate and offer up a full menu of Oktoberfest flavours.

Signs are being prepped for Winterlong’s Oktoberfest event set for Oct. 6. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)

Festive signs for a photo booth, pretzels, food and more have been crafted to be hung at the brewery’s outdoor beer garden (that will have tents and heaters in place if the weather is cold). Meghan also noted Tara Kolla of the Wish Factory thrift and consignment store is also helping out with some creative decorating options.

And while there’s no polka band like you might typically find at a more traditional Oktoberfest, Meghan said there will be a DJ on-hand to entertain.

Aside from Winterlong’s own brews, Oktoberfest-goers can expect some traditional Oktoberfest treats from familiar local sources.

Cheese will be supplied by Fine Cultured Cheese, while Tum Tum’s Black Gilt Meats are slated to supply an array of German cold cuts and sausages and Nomadic Harvests will create sauerkraut for the event along with some other goodies produced locally.

Time will tell whether Winterlong Oktoberfest-goers will be decked out in their best lederhosen for the event.

For those who didn’t get tickets or aren’t able to make it to Winterlong for the festivities, Festbier will be available on tap for growler fills or pints at Winterlong after Oktoberfest. Meghan said the brewery may also sell some kegs to bars or restaurants around town.

“It will be available on tap for some time,” she said.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at

Stephanie Waddell

About the Author: Stephanie Waddell

I joined Black Press in 2019 as a reporter for the Yukon News, becoming editor in February 2023.
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