Fahrgeschäfte (Rides)

Although many people don’t realize it, the Oktoberfest is not only about beer. Many people visit the grounds to enjoy the many roller coasters and other such rides that are available for children as well as for adults who want to test their nerves on such rides as the Olympia Looping, Flip-Fly or the 35-meter-high “The Tower”. Of course, it is better if you enjoy the rides before having a few liters of beer, although it can sometimes raise the fun factor after having a few brews. One attraction that is popular with those who have had a few beers is the Teufelsrad (Devil’s wheel). Here visitors sit together on a round, rotating disc which progressively gets faster and faster. The last one to fall off is the winner. The entrance price is almost always worth it because after you have had your turn you can stay and watch the show unfold repeatedly.

 If you want a good view over the entire Oktoberfest, one of the high flyers on the north-east end of the grounds or the Ferris Wheel at the south end should fit the bill. 

This overview of the respective showmen & rides is only a small selection of the more current rides. Actual lists of the rides with the showmen for each year are not always available. Participants may vary each year so we cannot claim to have a complete or current list.

Sources Referenced: München Betriebs-GmbH & Co. KG - Mit, Wiesnkini Project (inc. some images), Ride Index and Kirmes Forum

Kettenflieger (Chain Flyers)

Chain, hanging or also called flying carousel. Along with the floor carousel, the chain carousel is one of the archetypes in carousel construction with the oldest tradition. Around 1900, Friedrich Heyn began building small hanging carousels. Horses and small carts offered seating. Fritz Bothmann was soon developing flying carousels with missiles that harked back to the early history of aviation. The historical background of the first airship LZ1 by Graf Zeppelin , the powered flight of the Wright brothers or the first Channel crossing from Calais to Dover by the Frenchman Blériot was reflected in the crew . Carousels were built with aeroplanes, which had wings that spread far, or with gondolas that were attached to zeppelin airships.  After World War I, the planes were changed to giant swans and chain seats. Some of these have survived to this day.

In 1930, Fritz Bothmann developed a slanted mast aircraft , which, however, did not catch on at the time. The Zierer company started in the early 1970swith the further development of the former inclined plane. The result was the Wave Flyer. In 1997, the 167th and last aircraft was delivered by the Zierer company. Due to the construction, decorative roof edges , funnels and flat ceilings offer space for individual pictorial representations. Neo-Baroque stylistic elements have been retained for over 100 years.An exception is the  giant chain plane , which was developed as a novelty in 2006 and whose decoration lies solely in the steel skeleton construction. Chain carousels , no matter what size, are still part of the traditional offer at a folk festival.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The StarFlyer at the time was the latest sensation in the world of Tower rides. It was a unique attraction that appealed to both young and old, the adventurous and not so adventurous. While most tower attractions seem to fizzle out after time the StarFlyer kept the excitement going. The StarFlyer was able to operate in high winds unlike many other Tower rides as it had been TUV certified to operate in a wind speed of force 8 (74Km/h).  On the ride guests were seated in one of the twenty-four double seats that were hung on a double rotating star which swung the passengers out horizontally at approximately 160 feet up above the Wiesn. The seats were deep walled and fitted with double seat belts that include an ‘in between the leg harness’ that could only unlocked by the operator.  The 55 meter high chain carousel, became the “Alex Airport” in 2012.    

Owner:  Alexander Goetzke (München, Germany
Manufacturer:  Funtime Group (East Tyrol, Austria)
Year of construction:  2005
Seasons:
  2005 – 07 (2007 – 2016 as Alex Airplane)
Dimensions (WxDxH):  23 x 26 x 55 m, flight altitude 43 m”
Connection:  250 kW
Capacity:  24 people
Notes:  September 2005, Oktoberfest. Sold to Debbie Buwalda (Netherlands) end of 2016

Originally Alex Airport was constructed in 2008 by Austrian company Funtime, and travelled under the name Star Flyer 48. Between mid-August 2012 until mid-April 2013, Alexander Goetzke completely redesigned the ride with an aviation theme, and renamed the ride as Alex’s Airport.  Around the front of Alex Airport, four high-resolution LED video display flanked the check in area. The entrance area was designed as a check-in counter where the tickets look like airline tickets, and the hand-painted rear wall showed motifs of striking remote destinations. An airplane specially developed and built for Alex Airport adorned the tower’s top.  The giant chain flyer carried up to 48 passengers in 24 gondolas to a dizzying height of 55 meters that whirled almost horizontally in a circle through the air reaching up to a maximum of 80 km/h.  In 2017 Alex Airport was replaced by the 80 meter high Jules Verne Tower.

Former Names: until 9/2012  STAR FLYER
Owner: Alexander Goetzke (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Funtime Group (East Tyrol, Austria)
Year of construction: 2007
Season(s): 2007 – 16
Dimensions (WxDxH): 23 x 23.5 x 55 m
Connection: 200 kW
Capacity: 48 people
Notes:  The carousel, which premiered at the Cranger Kirmes in Herne in August 2007, was sold to the USA after the 2016 season. As of 2017 at Park Elitch Gardens in Denver.

The new Jules Verne Tower that premiered at the April 2017 Frankfurt Spring Dippemess and later at the Oktoberfest, is the highest, and only themed, mobile giant chain flyer in the world.  The Tower, a chain flyer ride, that as the motto ‘In 80 meters around the world,’ was constructed by the Austrian carousel manufacturer Funtime, created by the renowned design studio Marc Przybilla and designed by owner Alexander Goetzke, picks up the science-fiction visions of the writer Jules Verne (1828-1905) The Jules Verne Tower is the third in a line of chain flyers designed and operated by Goetzke following the Starfall and Alex’s Airport flyers introduced in 2005 and 2012 respectively. The Tower is a real eye-catcher that sets new standards with its impressive altitude of 80 meters and at a speed of 65 km/h provide riders an adventurous journey over the rooftops with a breathtaking view included.

Owner: Alexander Goetzke (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Funtime Group (East Tyrol, Austria)
Year of construction: 2017
Seasons: 2017 
Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 21 x 80 m
Connection: 400 kW
Capacity: 32 people in 16 gondolas
Notes:  Premiere April 7, 2017 Frankfurt, Dippemess; September 2017, Oktoberfest

The ride was built in 2019 and is celebrated its premiere at the Oktoberfest in Munich in the same year. The manufacturer is the renowned mechanical engineering company Funtime from East Tyrol, Austria, with the experts from the well-known company Atelier Ek took on the task of implementing the theme concept for the complex overall design. The most important thing for taking a ride with the Bayern Tower ist that you are free from giddiness. After you take a seat in one of the 16 two-seater gondolas you get secured with a hanger pole and an automatic belt. Safety first! Then the ride to the sky can commence – with some speed. The elevator fires the guests to the top of the mast with two meters per second. Then the round flight holds the speed up high. The Bayern Tower will spin you around with 65 km/h, which provides you with a fantastic 360 degree view.

Owner: AE Kaiser Freizeittechnologie (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Funtime Group (East Tyrol, Austria)
Year of construction: 2019
Seasons: 2019 —
Dimensions (WxDxH): 19 x 21 x 90 m, flight radius 30 m
Connection: 300 kW
Capacity:  32 people in 16 gondolas
Notes:  Premiere September 21, 2019, Oktoberfest
Website: http://bayern-tower.de/

One of the oldest rides on the Wiesn is Kalb’s Kettenflieger originally manufactured in 1919 by the Berlin-based company Gundelwein and Fischer for current owner Hans Kalb’s great-grandfather, Karl Johann Kalb and his wife Babette. The ride is basically still in its original state, just parts of the roof decorations have been replaced with faithful copies of well-known fairground painter Konrad Ochs’ classic landscape motifs, women’s figures, and floral arrangements. The originals were not lost, they are on display in the Munich City Museum. Similar to wave flyers, first introduced in the 1970s, the chairs are suspended on chains that fly out from the vertical to diagonal with the increasing speed of rotation, to about 45-60 degrees. Unlike wave flyers, the angle of the wheel remains the same, so it does not additionally angle. Something for the leisurely friend of such rides, a traditional variant suitable for children, teenagers, families and seniors.

Owner: Hans Kalb (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Gundelwein & Fischer (Berlin, Germany)
Year of construction:  1919
Seasons:
   —
Dimensions (WxDxH):
Connection:  —
Capacity:  48 people
Notes:  Premiere Munich, Auer Dult 1919. The business is now run by the 3rd and 4th generation ,Hans Martin Kalb and his son Florian.

The Wellenflug from Stranninger is a true traditional business and an Oktoberfest classic. The wellenflug, wave flight or wave flier (English: Wave Swinger) is a chain carousel with a wave-shaped rotation of the passenger carrier. A hydraulic ram is housed in a mast, which is slightly bent at the upper end and lifts the upper part of the carousel upwards via a cable, slightly above the “kink”. The top part rotates quickly and the mast slowly in the opposite direction, creating the wave movement. Since 2002 it has been possible to have the whole thing run in reverse, although not all travelling rides have been converted.  A  restoration of the ride with a new painting scheme was completed in 2011/2012.

Owner: Since 1993, Stranninger-Sgraja (München, Germany)
Previous owners: 1. 1973-82 Heinz Distel (Munich);  2. 1983-92 Ludwig Eigner (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Zierer Karussell- und Spezialmaschinenbau GmbH & Co. KG (Deggendorf, Germany)
Year of construction: 1972/73
Season(s): 2007 – 16
Dimensions (WxDxH): diameter 18 m, excursion 22 m, h 14.6 m
Connection:  160 kW
Capacity: 48 persons in 32 single and 8 double seats
Notes:  Premiered Oktoberfest Munich 1973
Website: https://www.wellenflug-stranninger.de/

Peter Lechner’s brand new carousel glides into the sky as a wave flyer – equipped with elaborate LED lighting, which sets the scene for the wave flyer perfectly when darkness falls.  The Swing Carousel consists of a rotating structure rising along a central column and supporting three rows of swinging chairs; 12 double seat chairs are located on the inner row for accommodation of one adult and one child. All decorative panels are made out of fibreglass with galvanized-steel frame. All decoration are hand made and all painting one by one hand-brush executed. Lighting is permanently mounted on fibreglass elements. The swinging chairs and their supporting chains are made by stainless steel and fibreglass shells. The covering roof is made up by a flame-retardant canvas with decorative fibreglass flat cover. The rotation is made by one self-braking AC motors on top and one AC motor at bottom of central column.

Owner:  Peter Lechner (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Bertazzon 3B SRL (Italy)
Year of construction:  2017
Seasons:  2018 —
Dimensions (WxDxH): 17 x 18 x 13 meters / 55.7 x 59 x 9.1 feet

Connection: 38 kW / 80 A
Capacity:  48 people in 24 single and 12 double seats. Total 720 passengers/hour (4 min. cycle)
Notes:  Premiered August 25, 2017 at the Wiesloch Winegrowers’ Festival

The Circus Welt is a variation on the carousel in which the chairs are suspended from the rotating top of the carousel. Tilting at its peak, the carousel rises telescopically flinging into the cool breeze at 30km/h. The rotating top is raised upwards; eventually tilting over a curve in top of the central pole, which rotates in the opposite direction to create its unique motion. Acquired in 1994 by Siegfried Kaiser & Sylvia Kaiser before being handed down to Tanja & Elli Kaiser (Tanja Kaiser-Grünberg).  2002, the wave flight was rebuilt to allow the ride to run in reverse, and was also equipped with the so-called Amore double seats, allowing couples to fly together. The ride was decorated in the baroque style, with a Circus theme. In 2108  Eugen Kübler acquired the ride before selling it a year later to the Mellors Group (UK) now travelling Saudi Arabia.

Former Names:  Initially RETRO 2000, until 1993 WELLENFLUG
Owner: Eugen Kübler &  Kleuser (München, Germany)
Previous owners:  1. Tissot (Switzerland);  2. Rene Bourquin (Switzerland);  3. Beat Spengler (Switzerland);  4. Josef Spengler (Switzerland);  5. Park Gardaland (Italy);  6. ab 1994 Siegfried Kaiser & Sylvia Kaiser (München, Germany);  7. Tanja & Elli Kaiser Gbr. (München, Germany);  8. bis 2017 Tanja Kaiser-Grünberg (München, Germany);  9. 2018 – 5/19 Eugen Kübler (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Zierer Karussell- und Spezialmaschinenbau GmbH & Co. KG (Deggendorf, Germany)
Year of construction:  1979
Seasons:  1994 to 5/2019
Dimensions (WxDxH):  16 x 16 (24 m with rear wall) x 12 m, extension 22.5 m
Connection: 120 kW
Notes:  The carousel was sold to the Mellors Group (UK)

Achterbahn (Roller Coaster)

Forerunners of roller coasters are the mountain and valley railways (Montagnes russes) of the 18th and 19th centuries. In the case of roller coasters, individual cars or trains of cars are guided through a closed rail system. On the classic roller coaster, the track runs in the shape of a figure eight, with loops that are traversed at different heights.  The roller coaster comes from America, in 1898 the first system of this type is said to have been built there. The first roller coaster imported from the USA was set up on the Theresienwiese by the showman Carl Gabriel on the occasion of the “Munich Exhibition 1908”. However, it was not designed for dismantling and assembly, so it could not be used for other events. The first transportable roller coaster was built in Germany in 1909. In the same year, the Munich showman Max Stehbeck presented the first, transportable figure 8 track , which had been designed by the American Erwin Vettel.

Erwin Vettel from Sandusky Ohio had worked as an engineer at the “Ingersoll Construction Company in Pittsburgh/Pennsylvania”, which had specialized in building roller coasters since the late 19th century. In December 1909, Hugo Haase bought the roller coaster from Max Stehbeck . In the years that followed, Haase built several roller coasters based on Vettel’s design plans. After his return from the USA in 1910, the showman and engineer Friedrich Wilhelm Siebold from Bremen built a “Super 8” roller coaster based on American plans in the workshops of his father Franz Siebold in Essen.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The largest transportable rollercoaster of the world clearly is a giant. Since 1989 it has attracted the bravest of Oktoberfest visitors. Following the introduction of the Rudolf Barth’s Doppelooping in 1984, which at that time increased the number of inversions to a record, three, the desire to add additional inversions led Barth to construct the Olympia-Looping.  The 13 Million Mark project was designed by Dr. Werner Stengel during 1983 to 1985. Stengel’s design goal was to achieve a harmonic ride experience despite the intense acceleration.  Since the construction by BHS in Peißenberg, between 1985 to 1988, the Olympia-Looping has been the only transportable roller coaster featuring five inversions. There are 30 train wagons that travel the 1214 meters of rails. The ride itself is impressive, after a 52-degree drop from 32.5 meters, the train accelerates to 80 km/h, exposing its riders to 5.2g entering the first loop.

Owner: Rudolf Barth & Sohn Schaustellerbetriebe KG (Bonn-München)
Manufacturer: BHS – Bayerische Hütten Stahl (Peißenberg, Bavaria, Germany)
Designer: Werner Stengel (Ing.-Büro Stengel GmbH), & Anton Schwarzkopf
Year of Construction: 1989
Seasons:  1989 —
Dimensions (WxDxH):  86.5 x 38.5 x 32.5 metres / 284 × 126 x 107 feet 
Length:  1250 metres / 4101 feet
Speed: 80.17 kmh / 50 mph
Connection:  200 kW (lighting), 350 kW (motor)
Capacity:  28 people in 5 train wagons, approx. 3,000 people/hour
Notes:  Premiered 21 September 2019, Oktoberfest München
Website
http://olympialooping.de

The Alpina Bahn had its world and Oktoberfest premiere in 1983 under the name Achterbahn, which means figure-eight-roller-coaster. Designed by the legendary Dr. Werner Stengel, built by Anton Schwarzkopf, it introduced a completely new roller-coaster element, the first flight parabola. At 27 meters high, 910 meters long, the Alpina Bahn is the second largest transportable roller-coaster in the world. The circuit runs in the form of several octagonal sections and allows five trains to run simultaneously each consisting of five cars, with four people in two rows. The train accelerates to 80 km/h and crests a hill on top of the station imitating the trajectory of a stone. Subsequently, riders experience a vertical acceleration below the earth’s gravitational force over a span of two-seconds, the so-called air-time. During the ride’s duration of 58 seconds, it exposes its riders to vertical accelerations between 4.2 and 0g (zero gravity).

Former names:  1983-86 Himalaya Bahn; 1987-97 Achterbahn 
Owner:  Oscar Bruch (Andernach, Germany)
Manufacturer: Schwarzkopf Industries GmbH (Bavaria, Germany)
Designer: Werner Stengel (Ing.-Büro Stengel GmbH), & Anton Schwarzkopf
Year of Construction: 1983
Seasons:  1983 —
Dimensions (WxDxH):  26 × 10 x 8 meters / 277 × 105 x 89 feet
Length: 277 meters / 2986 feet
Speed: 79.6 kmh / 49.5 mph
Connection:  280 kW
Capacity:  20 riders per train
Notes:  Premiered at the Düsseldorf Rheinkirmes on 16 July 1983
Website http://alpina-bahn.de

Since 1934 a number of different Wilde Maus roller-coasters have been present at Oktoberfest, starting with Franz Xaver Heinrich’s remaining true to the original family friendly principle and as opposed to other coaster rides free from loops or steep downhills. Designed by legendary Dr. Werner Stengel, built by German company Mason & Söhne, run by Renate and Peter Münch of München, the Wilde Maus has pulls its slightly frightened passengers to a height of 15 meters, commencing the ride over seven 180 degrees turns in zigzag course. In the second part of the ride it goes uphill and then downhill, but not very steep and rather cozy incline. The 4-seater vehicles drive as individual units and not as a long train, as in a typical roller coaster. This gives all passengers an unobstructed driving pleasure with the guarantee of being as exciting as each passenger’s seat in the front of a traditional aft trains.

Owner: Peter and Renate Münch (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Maurer & Söhne (München, Germany)
Year of Construction:
1994
Seasons:  1994 — 2019
Dimensions (WxDxH): 36 x 42.5 x 15 meters / 118 x 139 x 49 feet
Length: 365 meters / 
870 ft long
Speed: 50 kmh / 27 mph
Connection:  130 kW
Capacity:  16 cars, each with 4 people, 1,800 people per hour
Notes:  Premiered Oktoberfest 1994
Website:  
http://muenchs-wildemaus.de

Heidi – the Coaster offers an unusually fast lift hill transporting its riders with 5m/s to the top. The following ride is similar to a Wild Mouse until the breaks of the cars are loosened so that the gondolas can spin freely. The roller coaster offers a fun ride that could use more comfortable restraints. What makes “Heidi – The Coaster” so special is the buoyant turn after the first descent.  A booster lift catapults the gondolas directly up on the elevator hill, which is 13 meters high. From there you go with up to 58 km/h to and fro and up and down. The ride has the fastest ascent in the world for travelling roller-coasters, at around 21 kmh (13 mph) to a height of 13 metres (39.4 ft). The owners Ewald and Christina Schneider advertise that a ride in the revolving gondolas is great fun for the whole family despite the rapid pace. Up to four people can sit next to each other in the gondolas, who can then be properly shaken up using every trick in the book.

Owner: Ewald Schneider  (Bielefeld/München)
Manufacturer: Reverchon, France
Year of Construction: 2019
Seasons:  2019 —
Dimensions (WxDxH): 13 × 6 x 4 meters / 138 × 62 x 43 feet
Length: 122 meters / 1312 feet
Speed: 71.53 kmh / 44.3 mph
Connection: 150 kW
Capacity:  8 cars. Riders are arranged 4 across in a single row, for a total of 4 riders per car. 760 per hour
Notes:  Premiered Oktoberfest 2019
Website:
http://www.heidi-thecoaster.de/en/

The indoor dark roller coaster Höllenblitz, owned by Klaus Renoldi, jr., of Bremen, München, has been at the Oktoberfest since 2007. The roller-coaster itself, however, was built in 1992, when the firm Gerstlauer built the original ride as Magic Mountain, for the Renoldi family. Rebranded as a space theme Star World in 1997, it was finally redesigned as the Höllenblitz during the winter of 2006-07. With external dimensions of 50 meters width, 30 meters depth and a front height of 32 meters, it’s considered the world’s largest transportable indoor coaster. The three trains of the roller coaster consist of 15 cars, the first is designed as a mine train and offers no seats, the other cars each have two seats for passengers. The cars are freely rotating and can rotate uncontrollably around their own vertical axis and can accelerate up to 40 km/h in about 2.5 seconds.

Former names:  1992-97 Magic Mountain; 1998-2006 Star World
Owner:  Klaus Renoldi Jr. (Bremen, Germany)
Manufacturer: Stein/ Remodeled by Gerstlauer
Designer: Ing.-Büro Stengel GmbH
Year of Construction: 1992
Seasons:  1998 — 2019
Dimensions (WxDxH):  50 x 30 x 18 meters /  164.1 x 98.4  x 59.1 feet 
Length:  860 meters / 2,821.5 ft
Speed:  80 kmh / 49.7 mph
Connection:  380 kW
Capacity:  3 trains with 11 cars per train. Riders are arranged 2 across in a single row for a total of 22 riders per train
Notes:  Premiered in  1987, Restyled in 1998 & 2007. Operated in 2019 in the Serengeti Park  under the name Safari-Blitz
Website:  
http://hoellenblitz.de

In 2017, a new type of roller-coaster was introduced at the Oktoberfest by owner FTE Ahrend of Hannover. While the Drifting Coaster’s track is similar to other coaster rides, its traditional curved turns aren’t banked and with the introduction of 10 swinging gondolas, it offers a totally different experience. Constructed in 2016 by French manufacturer Reverchon, the coaster’s passengers do not sit in conventional gondolas, but in one of the 10 swinging gondolas that hold four passengers seated in pairs, back-to-back. The coaster’s gondolas rush at 60 km/h over the winding track, and incline up to 120 degrees in the really sharp curves. It’s not the high lateral acceleration to 60km/h that provides the thrills, instead from the motion of the gondolas incline in the curves. The Drifting Coaster’s rapid slalom with left-right drifts and breathtaking steep runs provide the necessary adrenaline rush for (almost) the whole family.

Owner: FTE Ahrend of Hannover
Manufacturer: 
Reverchon, France
Year of Construction:  2016
Seasons:  2017
Dimensions (WxDxH):  42 x 19 x meters / 138 x 62 x feet
Length: 480 meters / 1575 feet
Speed: 60 kmh / 37 mph
Connection:  100kW
Capacity: 40 people in 10 gondolas
Notes:  Premiered Oktoberfest 2017

Kinzler’s Pirateninsel is a family friendly rollercoaster, which made its premier at the Oktoberfest in 2019, and offered children from the age of six, either with or without their parents, the opportunity to gain their first roller coaster experience. As in a “real” coaster for grown-ups, the track from Kinzler’s pirate island leads over a length of 105 meters in heavy curves curves as well as ups and downs on two floors like for adults are waiting here.  The 105 meter long roller coaster is themed as a pirate island and is no higher than five metres. After the disappearance of a small roller coaster with fire and ice in recent years, the new ride will certainly be an enrichment for families. The Family Coaster , made by the Italian SBF VISA Rides, comes to the Oktoberfest in a pirate style and, with environmentally friendly LED lighting, not only makes children’s eyes shine.

Owner: Willy & Andrea Kinzler (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: SBF-Visa Group  (Casale di Scodosia, Italy)
Year of Construction: 2019
Seasons:  2019 —
Dimensions (WxDxH):  23 x 12 x 5 meters /  75.4 x 39.3 x 16.4 feet
Length: 105 meters / 344.4 feet
Speed:
Connection: 30 kW
Capacity:  24 people
Notes:  Premiered September 21, 2019, Oktoberfest 

Geisterbahnen (Ghost Train)

The architectural development of the ghost trains and their decorations can be attributed to certain families of showmen and the companies Heinrich Mack and Heinz Opitz. The first ghost train was presented in 1931 by Carl Böhm at the Hamburger Dom. A rectangular hall with a pitched roof, which was closed with tarpaulins on the sides and at the back. The building was preceded by a curtain wall, which concealed a rail system on the inside. A copyright or competition problem began in the same year. Boehm had an inkling of the new leisure experience he was launching and claimed it for himself, as an article in the magazine Komet. Böhm probably drew the attention of other fellow showmen to the new attraction through his advertisement in Komet, because as early as 1932, the companies Haase, Eckert, Kretschmar and Ruprecht appeared with ghost trains at the Munich Oktoberfest .

After the Second World War, the decorative design of the ghost trains , similar to that of the running and amusement shops, took an unusual course. The decisive factor was the facade design, which developed from the flat wooden curtain wall to the four-story scenery construction. The themes of the decoration generally included well-known horror figures such as Frankenstein or King Kong, in addition to ghosts and denizens of the underworld. In order to meet the demands of the folk festival visitors and in particular the admission criteria in decorative design and technical innovations, the basic buildings were often widened, added storeys and thematically redesigned.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The giant ghost train Geister Palast was first introduced at the Munich Oktoberfest 2017 by Irene and Andreas Kunz’s  replacing their former dark ride, the Odyssee. Originally built by German manufacture Mack in 1982, the ride operated under the name Godzillas Monster until 1999 when it changed to Monster Brut. The ride continued traveling under that name until 2010, when the ride was stored. Taken out of storage in 2012, the ride was rebuilt and redesigned, before being relaunched as the Odyssee in 2013. The Geister Palast is largest mobile ghost train in the world, visitors experience thrills and scary fun on more than 3 floors with a ride of up to 4 minutes on 520 meters of rail length in the unique, 360° rotating chaises. Passengers encounter giant gorilla paws, American animatronics, interactive flat screens displays for special visual effects, and exceptional lighting effects that operate in-tune with sound effects.

Former names:  1982-99 GODZILLAS MONSTER, 2000-12 MONSTER BRUT, 2012-16 ODYSSEE
Owner:  Irene & Andreas Kunz (München, Germany)
Previous Owner: 1992-2012 Fellerhoff
Manufacturer: Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG   (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 1982, conversion 2013, 2017
Seasons:  2013 – 15 as Odysee, 2017 —
Dimensions (WxDxH):   36 x  24 x 18 meters / 118 x  78.7 x 59.1 feet 
Length:  520 meters / 1,706 feet
Type:  3-storey ghost train
Connection:  100 kW
Capacity:  38 wagons
Notes:  After Monsterbrut became the adventure train Odyssey run by Andreas Kunz, it appeared at the Wiesn 2013-2015, before becoming Geister Palst. 
Website:
http://www.geisterpalast.de/

The Nostalgie-Geisterbahn undoubtedly a classic is over 100 years old. Originally built in 1903 as the Ghost Panopticon Nürnberg owner Stahlmann, it was rebuilt as the Geisterbahn by German company Mack, in 1930 and made its first Oktoberfest appearance in 1933. In 1967 the family Eckl obtained the ride operating under the control of Oktoberfest legend Gertrud Eckl. When she died 2001, Robert Eckl took over the family business. With Robert, Melissa and Stefan, the fifth generation the family ready to continue to entertain guests at the Oktoberfest. The front of the Geisterbahn in keeping with tradition is made of wood, a rarity today, but in order to keep up with modern times, two scary effects have been added. A few years ago, Count Dracula with 24 animated movements, that lures the guests in to his kingdom was added, and inside a nearly 3-meter animated Frankenstein figure adds to the illusions.

Former names:  1903-32 GHOST PANOPTICON
Owner:
Gertrud & Robert Eckl (München, Germany)
Previous Owner: 
Until 1967 Heinrich Stahlmann (Nuremberg, Germany)
Manufacturer:
1903 Self-made Stahlmann; 1930 Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG   (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1903, Rebuilt as railway 1930
Seasons: 
1933
Dimensions (WxDxH): 
24 x 15 x 8 meters / 78.7 x 49 x 26 feet
Type: 
Single level ghost train
Connection: 
50 kW
Notes:  Originally a walking haunted house until 1930
Website: 
http://nostalgiegeisterbahn.de/

In 1945, Karl Judenhofer built the his first ghost train, the Geister Burg, out of war remnants from a sugar confectionery, with cars powered by aircraft starter motors, and current generated by a former submarine converter. Following his next ride, Hexenmühle, constructed 5 years later, Judenhofer debuted the Geister Fahrt, the first ride with a plastic double front façade. Rebuilding the track in 1962 he introduced the first large moving figures. After the 1967 marriage between Judenhofer’s daughter, Irene and Alexander Kunz, after taking over the business, purchased the first steel ghost train from the Neuhausen based manufacturer Zierer in 1973. Kunz, in 1985 bought Fredi Lehmann’s Mack built 2-storey Ghostschloss, with its unique green façade. Since 2004 real living spirits were introduced, both inside, as well as providing mischief prior to the rides start. Some of the living ghosts were especially hired, from the National Theater just for the Oktoberfest, to enhance passenger horror and enjoyment.

Former names: Originally HEXENMUHLE; 1980-84 SCHLOSSGEISTER
Owner: 
Judenhofer-Kunz (München, Germany)
Previous Owner: 
1980-84 Fred Lehmann (Worms, Germany)
Manufacturer:  
Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1945, Rebuilt 1962, 1973
Seasons: 
1945  
Dimensions (WxD): 
32 x 20 meters / 105 x 65.6 feet
Type:
2-storey ghost train
Connection: 
Lights 100 kW
Capacity: 12 wagons for 4 to 6 people
Notes:  The ride contains 26 interior figures with 3-6 living ghosts + special effects. 
Website: 
http://www.geisterschloss.info/

The Fahrt zur Hölle (Go to Hell), Germany’s most modern ghost train, after a long planning phase, the design by the Sud Tyrolean artist Carlo Proserpio was constructed over a period of 8 months by the Italian manufacturer Arcadia, for owner Dom-Jollberg. Behind the impressive 2-story façade, 18 closed gondolas make the 2.5 minute, 180 meter journey, past more than 25 pneumatically operated animated figures. The figures are supported by a series of effects that awaken all senses: light, laser and holograms effects, water and fire , visual deceptions, surprising odors, creepy sound effects, fog machines, and an icy cold breeze from nowhere, guarantee a unique multimedia experience. The variety of ghosts ranges from lifelike models of humans (or parts of them) to amusing characters like a water-spewing skeleton to fire breathing monsters and colossal monsters, along with the 25-30 ‘living’ spirits, hiding in the ride, provide the exceptional horror thrills that make this ride memorable.

Owner: Dom-Jollberg OHG  (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Barbizan (Italy)  – Now named Arcadia 
Designer:  Carlo Proserpio
Year of Construction: 
2001
Dimensions (WxDxH): 
29 x 14,5 x 14 meters / 95 x 47.5 x 46 feet
Length: 180 meters / 590.5 feet
Type:
2-storey ghost train
Connection: 
60 kW
Capacity: 18 gondolas with 2 people. Total 1,000 people/hour
Notes:  The Fahrt zur Hölle has 3 floors. Only 2 are used and the top one is only present for decoration.
Website: 
https://www.facebook.com/FAHRT-ZUR

On 4 levels and a height of 23 meters, Daemonium is considered the world’s largest mobile ghost train. The ride can process more than 2,000 people every hour. Originally built in 1978 by German manufacturer Mack Rides, it began life as the Kingdom of Magic for owner Renoldi, who ran the ride until 1991, when Martin Blume became owner. Converted by Huss, it initially began operating under the name Geisterschlucht (Ghost Gallery) for the 1992 season. Between 1993-2005 Blume continued to operate the ride under either names Grüne Hölle (Green Hell) or Phantasia. In 2005, Blume’s renamed his ride Daemonium, and had the ride completely redesigned and rebuilt from the facade to the complete inner workings. In seven trains, each with 4 freely rotating gondolas that contain two people venture through scenes of fear and terror, in a five minute ride, that includes special sound and light scenery, as well as live performers.

Former names:  1978-90 KINGDOM OF MAGIC, 1990-92 GEISTERSCHLUCHT, 1993-05 GRÜNE HÖLLE, from 1998 also toured as PHANTASIA
Owner:  Martin Blume (Munich/Nienburg, Germany)
Previous owner:  until 1991 Renoldi (Bremen, Germany)
Manufacturer: Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG   (Waldkirch, Germany), Converted by Huss
Year of Construction: 1978, Redesigned 1992, 2005
Dimensions (WxDxH):  36 x 22 x 23 meters / 118 x 72 x 74.2 feet
Length:  330 meters with 40 meters in front / 1,082.6 feet with 131 feet in front
Type:  4-storey ghost train
Connection:  120 kW
Capacity:  max. 2000 people/h
Notes:  A digitally printed functional model of the mobile ghost train Daemonium is available in HO scale from Faller
Website:  https://geisterbahn.eu/

Dr Archibald: Master of Time is the first large scale portable virtual reality dark ride. Housed in the shell of an old ghost train, the ride has been transformed into a spectacular VR adventure and the first virtual reality attraction to appear at the Oktoberfest. The ride takes visitors on a journey to find history professor and amateur archeologist Dr Archibald, who has gone missing – somewhere in time. After being seated in one of the 32 two-seater ride cars and being helped to put on their VR headsets, guests travel back to prehistoric dinosaur filled realms, dive underwater in search of Atlantis, before ending up almost being crushed in a giant machine from the Industrial Revolution.  The facade is equally astounding, with a very opulent design that uses fantasy and steam punk elements , complete with LEDs and animations that provides visitors a taste of what lies beyond.

Former names: 1971 – 1994: MAMMUT HÖLE;  1994 – 6/2013: GEISTER TEMPLE; 7/2013 – 2016: GEISTERHOTEL
Owner:
Patrick Greier
 (Schneverdingen, Germany)
Previous owner: 1971 – mid 2015: Fellerhoff (Bonn/München, Germany)
Manufacturer:
Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction:  
1971 Rebuilt in 2017
Dimensions (WxDxH):  44 x 22.5 x 21.5 meters / 144.3 x 73.8 x 70.5 feet
Type: 
ghost train /
adventure train
Connection: 120 kW
Capacity:  32 two seater wagons
Notes:  Premiered at Hamburger Dom festival in 2018, and the Oktoberfest in 2019. Cost €5 million to build and took three years of development and production time.
Website: https://dr-archibald.de/

The Shocker Geisterbahn owned by Edmund Eckl was originally built in the early 1970s by German manufacturer Mack, for the owner Wucherer from Stuttgart. Eckl obtained the ride in 1973, rebuilding and renaming the ride several times. The trademark of the Shocker are the two oversized heads on both sides of the front and the huge talking Freddy Kruger head in the middle, Dracula, Frankenstein, the Grim Reaper are all found within. Inside, the visitor can expect a ghost train ride of a different kind. The passengers ride in a caged wagon through seven lavishly and highly realistically designed rooms, from a from horror bath, an exorcist room, to an encounter with a ghost rider. There are no ready-made horrors here, the nocturnal creatures are lovingly and elaborately made by the Eckl’s themselves, 26 of them lurk in the most diverse corners with ever new surprises, immersed in fluorescent light, illuminated only briefly by artificial eyes or enveloped in vapors interspersed with mouldy fluid.

Former names:  1973 – 1980 KING-KONG-HORRORBAHN, 1981 to 1994 SCHLOSS SCHRECKENSTEIN, 1994 to 2003 HORROR-VISION
Owner: 
Marcel Böttger (Hamburg, Germany)

Previous owner:  1971 – 1973 Wucherer (Stuttgart, Germany);  1973 – 2018 Edmund Eckl (München, Germany);  2018 to early 2019 Hinzen (Netherlands)
Manufacturer: Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1971

Dimensions (WxDxH):  33 x 16 x 11 meters / 108.3 x 52.5 x 36 feet
Type: 
ghost train

Connection:  100 kW
Notes:  On the night of November 2, 2020, three of the four transports caught fire on the Schützenplatz in Hanover, with the business being largely destroyed.

Laufgeschäfte (Running Show)

In the running shop, the visitor moves through the facility on foot on a prescribed course and encounters various attractions such as air blowers , rolling barrels and other amusements. As  early as the end of the 19th century, the so-called laughing cabinet (Lachkabinett) or laughing house (Lachhaus) was referred to as a running business, in which people amused themselves in front of their deformed and distorted mirror images. One of the early popular rides was the maze, first in the Komet as early as the 1890s. The Crystal Palace Maze built in 1957 for Anton Gormann is still in operation today.  The rides name was inspired by a drawing of the Crystal Palace in Paris in 1900. It was constructed as a  rectangular structure with a slightly sloping pent roof and a curtain wall. Gormann built a hall on a square wooden floor, fifteen meters wide and nine meters long. About 100 panes of glass were screwed into wooden strips, creating a glass labyrinth.

Gormann’s desgin became a common design for future rides. However, there are also special structures with individual designs. For example, two- and multi-storey systems. As early as the early 1950s, Heinrich Mack built running shops such as the Alt-Berlin or the Allotria for a Swiss showman. The rectangular structures were preceded by flat curtain walls. The perspective painting brought depth to the depicted cityscape. In 1976, the Bremen showman Friedel Finnendahl commissioned a maze from Willi Dietz . What was new was that the structure was permanently installed on a carriage and the curtain wall was folded and plugged in several times.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

A visit to Michael Kollmann ‘s amusement store is great fun that everyone should have experienced at least once . The Alpenrausch with its Bavaria motifs from Wildschütz Jennerwein to Dirndlmaiden stands out. You immediately feel as if you are in the Bavarian foothills of the Alps, including boxes of geraniums and bellowing deer. The family of operator Michael Kollmann appears at the Oktoberfest in the sixth generation.  Alpenrausch is the successor to his Wiesn success Traumfabrik, where Kollmann has implemented many ideas relating to scenes from Bavaria in his latest attraction. What will happen behind the motley scene?  Continue to the slide at water features – but be careful! Air jets are lurking everywhere for blowing dirndl skirts… With momentum, the spiral slide takes you down one floor through the curves, then your eyes need a second to get used to the laser tunnel.

Former names:  1997-2008 CHINATOWN; 2008-09 TRAUMFABRIK (Dream Factory)
Owner:
Michael & S. Kollmann (München, Germany)
Previous Owners: Barth (Erlangen, Germany) until 1996
Manufacturer:  Conversion by Breuer (Germany)/Millenium (Italy) 1996
Year of Construction: 
Conversion 1996/97, and 2009

Dimensions (WxDxH):  19 x 12 x 9.8 meters / 62.3 x 39.3 x 32 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft – Fun House
Connection:  50 kW
Notes:  Converted Alpenrausch in 2009 it made its premier at the Hof – folk festival.

Many people have trouble finding the way home after visiting the beer tents. However, it is even more difficult to find the way out of the maze. The aim of this attraction is to escape as quickly as possible the intricate labyrinth of dead ends and confusing mirror walls. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the first ‘transparent labyrinth’ was built with glass and mirror technology. The people lost in the maze always believed they knew the way, and ran into glass walls or nothingness over and over. This is an especially good time when slightly intoxicated, or watching confused fathers scurrying through the glass labyrinth—and just a few feet away stand their kids with tears in their eyes, unable to find their way. In front of one of the glass labyrinths there’s a funny little guy in a clown costume who shakes with laughter all day. Many children don’t trust him at all.

Former names:  DIE GROSSE FREIHEIT (The Great Freedom)
Owner:
Edgar & René Rasch oHG (Hamburg, Germany)
Previous Owners:  Dagobert Bruch (Karlsruhe, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1957

Dimensions (WxDxH):  24 x 9 x 11 meters / 78.7 x 24.5 x 36 feet
Type:  Glass maze
Connection:  60 kW
Website:  http://www.rasch-irrgarten.de/

Who hasn’t always wanted to be live in the jungle camp?  Take a trip to the Australian jungle. Inspired by a well-known reality show on TV, visitors can expect not only the latest effects on a running track of more than 200 meters, spread over 3 floors, but also some jungle tests of pure adventure. The showman Agtsch skilfully relies on the elements of earth, fire, water and air. Before you enter the interior of the complex designed as a temple, you can first have fun on a 16 meter long water parkour. A special eye-catcher is the three-meter-tall orangutan, which moves arms, eyes and jaws, splashes water through a gap in its teeth and even talks to a skull and crossbones was custom-made by a Franconian figure-making company.

Former names:  1982-2004 SHOWBOAT; 2003-06 SHOW-TIME; 2007-17 AMAZONAS
Owner:
Angelo Agtsch (Munich, Germany)
Previous Owners: 1982-86: Müller (Hanau, Germany); 1987-2000: Rosai (Munich, Germany); 2001-06: Brumbach (Neumarkt-St. Veit, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1982, Rebuilt 2007, 2017

Dimensions (WxDxH):   22.5 x 8.5 x 13.5 meters / 73.8 x 27.8 x 44.3 feet
Length:   200 meters / 656 feet
Type:  3-storey running shop
Connection:  50 kW
Notes:  Premiered in 2018 at the Oktoberfest

Johann Mathes comes from an old Nuremberg drama dynasty, which has been running a flea circus for about 150 years. His father, Peter Mathes, was allowed to show the flea dressage for the first time at the 1948 Autumn Festival on the Theresienwiese.  At the 2005 Oktoberfest the show began curiously late: two days before the start of the show, the Flea company experienced their exodus, and so new artists had to be obtained and trained in a hurry. Due to a newspaper call, sufficient female dog fleas were collected, and so the Flea Circus was still able to participate with its new 60 artistic stars.  In 2010, the longtime employee of the Mathes family, Robert Birk, took over the flea circus and the tiny artists continue to prove their skills in shooting footballs, pull chariots in chariot racing, dance, turn carousels, or moving weights that weighs up to 20,000 times their own body weight.

Owner:  Family Birk (Pombach, Germany)
Previous Owners:   until 2004 Matthes (Nuremberg, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Popp (Germany)
Year of Construction:
1948

Dimensions (WxDxH):   5 x5 x 5 meters / 16.4 x 16.4 x 16.4 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft / Flea Circus
Notes:  Premiered 1948 Autumn Festival on the Theresienwiese
Website:  http://flohcirkus.de

The Lach + Freu-Haus was originally constructed by the company Dietz Fahrzeugbau in 2000 for owner Willi Schäfer (Heinsberg), and traveled under the name Alien Attack. Stored for 2002, Schäfer sold it in 2003 to Vorlop (Sehnde) who renamed the ride Area 51. Eugen and his wife Christina Distel obtained the ride in 2006. The Distel’s completely redesigned the ride, renaming it Münchner Hof-Freu-Haus. 1 year later they renamed the ride Lach + Freu-Haus, to avoid any risk of confusion with the Münchner Staatliches Hofbrauhaus. Visitors start by crossing a lake, over moving stones, past a crazy fountain and water jets before entering the house. Inside a pure adventure awaits. The entire house wobbles during the tour over two floors containing a mirror chamber, cowbell labyrinth, rotating hay bales, vibrating disc and hinged and folding floors . The end awaits the with the largest rolling casket in the world, which moves in time with the music.

Former names:  2000-02 Alien Attack; 2003-06 Area 51; 2006-07 Münchner Hof-Freu-Haus
Owner:
 Since 2006 Eugen & Christina Distel (München, Germany)
Previous Owners: 2000-03 Willi Schäfer (Heinsberg, Germany); 2003-06 Jörg Vorlop (Sehnde, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany)
Year of Construction:
2000, Conversion by Dietz in 2006

Dimensions (WxDxH):   23 x 14 x 14 meters / 75.4 x 46 x 46 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft – Fun House
Connection:  80 kW / 400v
Notes: Diestl ride first traveled as the Hof-Freu-Haus, but had to be renamed  due to the similarity in name with the beer hall Münchner Staatliches Hofbrauhaus
Website: https://www.lachfreuhaus.de/

The ride is based on the former Hitparade of the family Fackler (formerly Kipp, Bonn) where the hall and the central building served as the basis for the ride Après Ski PartyAfter the showman Häsler lost his former attraction Encounter in an arson attack, he replaced it with the Après Ski Party which he rename München Ski Party, that was one of the new attractions of the Oktoberfest in 2019The München ski party is an unusually openly designed funhouse with  a turning around labyrinth made out of glass, some vibrating floors and a lot of rubber ropes, that you have to pass. If you do not want to get wet you should be careful at the water obstacles. Special highlight: There even is a real snow cannon. The Münchner Ski Party offers fun and action for everybody. You do not have to be a certain age to take part at the obstacle parcours, but you should still be able to stand safely on your feet. 

Former names:  2010-19 Apres Ski Party
Owner:
Karl Häsler
Previous Owners: Andree Fackler (Essen/Ruhr, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH   (Germany)
Year of Construction: 
2010

Dimensions (WxDxH):  23 x 14 x 7 meters / 75.4 x 50 x 23 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft / Fun House
Notes:  Karl Häsler premiered his ride at the Oktoberfest 2019 after his ride Encounter was destroyed by arson at a fairground in Holland. The original business Hit Parade was sold in parts. The chaise hoist and the outriggers became the “Disco Star” from the Gigengack company (Netherlands). The hall and the central building served as the basis for the new building of the Après Ski Party. The front was used on Weber’s Hip-Hop-Express.

The Pirates Adventure attraction designed by Michael Schneider, and built by family Dietz in Schwalmstadt, that took two years to complete had its Oktoberfest premier in 2013. The relatively elaborately designed, handsome façade, features a sunken ship whose cannons have not just gone down, an eight meter long basking shark that literally hangs over the heads of the landlubbers running across the fairground, not to mention the tough pirate who, with his friendly parrot, tries to lure the visitors inside. These are just a few details that distinguish Pirates Adventure from the brightly colored and screaming attractions around it. Visitors go from scene to scene within seven minutes, in which animated characters represent different aspects of the pirates’ life are presented with great attention to detail, inspired by the movie Pirates of the Caribbean. With a treasure hunts and storms on the high seas, the joyous pirate existence with wine, woman and song can be observed.

Former names:  
Owner:
Michael Schneider (Lippstadt, Germany)
Previous Owners:  1998-99 Boesveld van Tol (Netherlands)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1998

Dimensions (WxDxH):  27 x 11 x 12 meters / 88.5 x 36 x 6.6 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft
Connection:  40 kW
Notes:  Oktoberfest premier in 2013
Website: http://www.pirates-adventure.de/

The Rotating Amusement Cylinder” is the name of the patent in Sweden on December 21, 1948. by Engineer W. Ernst Hoffmeister from the Ebern Republic.  The ride that emerged from this flash of inspiration – the “Original Rotor – is still rotating to this day, and since 1969 the Pluschies family has been running the ride. Thanks to the centrifugal force of the rotating drum, the passengers stick to the wall like flies. For many years, the “Rotor” has been a fixture at the Oktoberfest. The traditional carousel is also technically quite impressive. The four and a half meter high drum with a diameter of 4.20 meters is accelerated to 28 revolutions per minute by an electric motor. The passengers then circle at about 22 kilometers per hour and are held against the wall with 3.2 times their body weight by a centrifugal force of about 2G, as the ground falls away, and they are ‘glued-on’ the wall. The technology always allows the speed to be adjusted.  

Former names:  briefly in 1985 as ZYKLON
Owner: 
Pluschies family (Hamburg. Germany)
Previous owner: Lilian Hohlmeier,  (née Hoffmeister) from 1955 to 1969
Manufacturer:  Ernst Hoffmeister, conversion 1973 – 1984 by Anton Schwarzkopf Company, and 1985 conversion by  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany) 
Year of Construction:
1955, new front 1985 (original rotor was built in 1949 by Ernst Hoffmeister from 1972 with a facade in front of the ride, replaced by a new system inside in 1973 by Schwarzkopf

Dimensions (WxDxH):  20 x 15.5 x 12 meters / 65.6 x 50.8 x 7.5 feet
Type:  Rotor/Kijkzaak
Capacity: 20 people 
Notes: Celebrated its premiere in Germany in 1955
Website: http://www.original-rotor.de/

There has been Toboggan slides since the early 19th century. In 1906, the Badener Anton Bausch built the probably first German Toboggan, an originally American tower chute, after the Parisian model. This traditional amusement has been owned by the Konrad family from Schongau, Germany, since 1920 when the ride was known as Trottoir Roll – and Canadian Electric Tobogan. Later, the tower was shortened and operated only with a slide. Since 1933, the toboggan has been a regular at the Oktoberfest. The fun starts when riders using a high-speed conveyor belt, are transported to the 8 meter top. The conveyor belt pulls passengers along quickly, but unlike an escalator, the belt’s handrail does not move and inevitably the riders especially those drunk, lose their footing and are carried up on the conveyor belt kicking like turtles on their backs. From the top of the tower passengers slide down at high speed in a wooden gully winding around the tower.

Owner:  Claus Konrad & family (Rudolf, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1920

Dimensions (WxDxH):  24.10 x 8.22 x 20.53 meters / 79 x 27 x 67.4 feet
Slide length: 39.60 meters / 130 feet
Type:  Slide
Connection:  30 Kw
Notes: Premiered at the 1933 Oktoberfest.
Website:  http://toboggan-konrad.de

The attraction Big Bamboo by Michael and Robert Hempen appeared for the first time at the 2014.  Wobbly footbridges, suspension bridges and water hazards have to be overcome in the Big Bamboo. At the beginning, to the sounds of reggae and limbo, a raft takes you to a tropical island. The pool in front of the running shop holds around 20,000 liters of water, which you have to cross. You can also take off your shoes. Because sometimes the floor is different than you think you see at first glance. Balance is a challenge on the dancefloor, and the Bora Bora Queen, the rocking shipwreck, is anchored for boarding. The animation in front of the Big Bamboo is also impressive; Young men and women in Hawaiian shirts and beach wear pose in front of the running shop and hand out floral decorations to the guests, creating a perfect Caribbean feeling. Especially when the sun is shining over the Wiesn.

Owner:  Robért Hempen oHG (Oldenburg, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany)
Year of Construction: 
2011

Dimensions (WxDxH):  22.5 x 13 x 16 meters / 73.8 x 42.7 x 52.5 feet
Type:  Laufgeschäft
Connection:  80 kW
Notes:  Premiered July 2011 Düsseldorf, Rheinwiesen
Website:  http://www.bigbamboo.eu/basic.html

The Hex’n Wipp’n or Witches Swing, looks unimpressive at first glance but inside it is devilishly good. The ride offers a crazy journey through special lighting and motion effects that makes the passenger wondering. It’s like bewitched. Also known as illusion swing, bewitched, or rotatable house, the amusement was first introduced to Germany in 1894. Based on the American amusement, Mad House, that attraction, one of the oldest fairground illusions is still enjoyed today. Built based upon some old plans by the Hannover company Lielie, in 1968, the ride has been operated by various owners, was temporally marketed under the name Weltraum-Partei (World Space Party) before Michael and Tanja Zehle from Augsburg obtained the ride in the mid 1990’s. Guaranteed to unbalance passengers, the ride seats tilt only slightly, while the entire room rotates, providing a roller coaster of emotions without any significant physical stress. Thus, a truly unusual experience for the whole family!

Former names:  WELTRAUM-PARTY
Owner:
Michael and Tanja Zehle (Augsburg, Germany)
Previous Owners:  1968 – 75 Ottens;  1975 – 76 Helmut Meinecke (Oldenburg, Germany); Unknown (Netherlands); 1977-81 Avi (München, Germany);  1981-96 Avi (Austria)
Manufacturer: Lielie (Hannover, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1968

Dimensions (WxDxH):  13 x 10 x 8 meters / 42.7 x 32.8 x 26.2 feet
Type:  Hexenschaukel/Drehendes Haus (Witch Swing/Revolving House)
Connection:  35 kW
Notes: This type of swing, also known as the “rotating house”, is one of the oldest fairground illusions and was introduced in Germany as early as 1894 based on an American idea.

Showman Karl Häsler known for Sensorium, Imagination and Psychedelic, once again combines high-tech with a good amount of thrills in the Encounter, launched at the 2014 Oktoberfest. Encounter offers a high-energy eerie encounter of the third kind for visitors in the new simulation. Häsler realizes his visions, builds the attraction, embeds them in specially composed music and sophisticated technology, and acts as a director at the attraction. The image editing, sound effects and music were contributed by Frankfurt composer Christian Wildermuth, whom Häsler previously worked with on Sensorium. The special effects were provided by American manufacturers that produced the effects for David Copperfield’s illusion shows. Eighty people are seated in a theatre designed as an old factory, where a virtual professor that researches non-terrestrial life forms introduces his latest experiment, a human/alien clone. Unfortunately, something goes wrong and suddenly the alien emerges from a test tube in the middle of the room

Owner:  Karl Häsler (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Homemade by Häsler
Year of Construction: 
2014

Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 24 x 16 meters / 68.9 x 78.7 x 52.5 feet
Type:  Simulator
Connection:  120 kW
Capacity:  82 people
Notes: The ride premiered at the Oktoberfest on September 20th, 2014, was about to be set up in Uden, the Netherlands, when it was severely damaged by a fire on July 6th, 2018. The business was subsequently abandoned.

Riesenräder (Ferris Wheel)

The term Ferris wheel probably only came about in the middle of the 20th century. The original name Russe or Russen Rad names seem to have derived from the Russian swing. This designation was described in the literature of the Petersburg Swing Festival of 1794. The earliest reference to a Russian swing comes from the Englishman Peter Mundy, who attended a Turkish Bairam festival in Phillippopolis – today’s Plodov in Bulgaria – in 1620. In his travel journal he describes and sketches two types of swings. The simple wooden construction forms the basis for all further development stages of the Russian swing. The first wooden Russians built in Germany can be attributed to Fritz Bothmann based on the original plans that were found. Franz Gundelwein, a former designer at the Bothmann company, began producing his own Ferris wheels in 1910. Therefore, an exact dating and construction is often not possible, so older wooden Ferris wheels are assigned to Bothmann/Gundelwein.

The development of the steel Ferris wheel began in 1893, when the American engineer George Ferris designed a gigantic wheel with a diameter of 76 meters for the Chicago World’s Fair – the Ferris Wheel. As a result of the Chicago World’s Fair, Ferris wheels were installed in London Blackpool in 1894, in Vienna in 1897, in Berlin in 1898 and for the 1900 World’s Fair in Paris on the Champs-de-Mars. All European wheels were designed by the English engineer Walter B. Basset.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The Russenrad (Russian wheel) is a smaller version of the Ferris wheel, that has been popular at German folk festival since the 18th century.  In 1925 the shoemaker, Josef Esterl commissioned the carousel factory Gundelwein in Wutha to construct a ‘Russian wheel,’ at the same time, Esterl obtained a sheet music concert organ, made by the Bruder Brothers company from Waldkirch im Breisgau. Now the third generation, Herbert Koppenhöfer and his sister Edith Simon, the grandsons of Josef, continuing operating the Russenrad and the original organ today.  Esterl put his new ride into action in July of 1925. It originally had a carved facade with paintings that were exchanged for the current ones in the 1950s. Until about 1960 it was the biggest Ferris wheel in southern Germany, with 12 gondolas a height of 46 feet/14 meters. Over the years, the small Ferris wheel has sometimes served as a backdrop for domestic and foreign feature film productions.

Owner: Sold in 10/2019 due to new TUV requirements
Previous Owners: Josef Esterl (Germany), and siblings Herbert Koppenhöfer  and Edith Simon (München, Germany) 
Manufacturer:  Hans Gundelwein Co. (Wutha, Germany)
Year of Construction:
1925

Dimensions (WxDxH):   12 x 8 x 14 meters / 39.3 x 26.2 x 46 feet
Type:  Russische Schaukel – Riesenrad /Russian swing – ferris wheel
Connection:  12 hp motor starts with a saltwater starter as it was at the time of manufacture. Electrodes are dipped into a tub filled with water and salt using a crank. The deeper they sink, the faster the drive motor turns. After about ten laps the showman cranks the contacts out again: the engine slows down and the ride comes to an end.
Capacity:  12 gondolas
Notes: The artistically designed concert organ, on the other hand, is probably even older than the wheel itself. 

The Munich Oktoberfest Ferris Wheel of the Willenborg family was built in 1979 by the company Schwarzkopf, offers an impressive view over the Theresienwiese and the entire city at a height of 50 meters. In the eyes of many it’s the most beautiful Ferris wheel and it is one of the most photographed motives of the Oktoberfest. But people not only like photos of, but also from the wheel. When visitors reach the top, they have a magnificent view of the Alps in good weather. At night the queues are usually longer when visitors can witness a breathtaking view over the illuminated festival area. The Willenborg families Riesenrad is illuminated by 35,000 light bulbs and offers 40 gondolas, two of which are equipped for disabled people, provides a total capacity of 192 seats. Those who want to impress their sweetheart or who are planning to marry at the Oktoberfest can rent one of the two VIP gondolas.

Owner: Heinrich Willenborg
Manufacturer:  Schwarzkopf Industries GmbH (Bavaria, Germany)
Year of Construction:
1979

Dimensions (WxDxH):  25 x 27 x 50 meters / 82 x 23 x 164 feet
Type:  Riesenrad / Ferris Wheel
Connection:  250 kW
Capacity: 40 gondolas each can hold 10 people
Notes: Incidentally, 2 of the 40 gondolas of the Oktoberfest Riesenrad are handicapped accessible, the Riesenrad is barrier-free accessible with a wheelchair.
Website: https://www.willenborg-riesenrad.de/

Schaukeln (Rocker)

We can already find rocking devices on old engravings from the 17th century, they were simple constructions with a seat hanging between two supports. Around 1890 the first swings appeared at German fairs. They were initially called the American swing. So far it has not been proven whether the swing was known from America or whether the Americanization that had become fashionable led to the naming. The passengers stood alone or in pairs in small ships and moved by their own physical propulsion. Until the 1960s, swings were generally found at fairgrounds, today they only appear occasionally. After the turn of the century, a large ship that moved back and forth on rails was constructed. A larger number of passengers found space in it. Such a system later became known as the Hutsch machine in the Vienna Prater.

Various designs followed in the 20th century, with ships hanging from massive axles or attached to hydraulic arms that rocked back and forth or flipped upside down. At the turn of the 20th century, an unknown locksmith constructed a large reciprocating ship called the Hutsch Machine. It was set up in Vienna’s Prater.704 A large number of passengers found space in it. In the late 1970s, the series of various designs began, ships hanging from massive axles or attached to hydraulic arms that rocked back and forth or flipped over.

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The XXL-Racer brings the first propeller type ride to the Oktoberfest. In contradiction to the very popular Oktoberfest ride Cyber Space, the XXL-Racer has gondolas at both ends and therefore doesn’t swing, but constantly spin like a carousel. The XXL-Racer, that premiered summer 2017, is a space-themed, updated incarnation of Booster Maxx, a ride fabricated by the Italian company Fabbri. The ride has a free-swinging passenger gondola with space for eight people hanging at each end. While the passengers on the ground get in or out of one gondola, the passengers in the other gondola have a magnificent panoramic view of the Wiesn at a height of 55 meters. When fully loaded, the propeller swings its crew through the air alternately in forward and reverse gear at speeds of up to 120 kilometers per hour (75 mph). Depending on the rotation of the gondola and the turning speed, G-forces of 0G to 5G!

Owner:  Franz and Hilde Goetzke & Arnd Bergmann (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Fabbri Group (Italy)
Year of Construction: 
2017

Dimensions (WxDxH):  20 x 15 x max. 55 meters / 65.6 x  49.2 x  180.4 feet  
Type:  Booster Maxx 55/16
Connection:  300 kW/ 400 A
Capacity: 16 People in 2 Gondolas
Notes:  Premiered 28. June 2017, Bad Wimpfen,Talmarkt

The Freestyle, one of the various designed afterburner rides constructed by the Dutch manufacturing company KMG. Built in 1999 for owners Margarete und Johann Agtsch (München). The Freestyle (afterburner) ride is a mix between a ship swing and a frisbee swing. The Afterburner has a long swinging arm, which swings up to 120° with a maximum height of 22 meters. At the bottom of the arm there is a rotating hub with 6 gondolas that offers seats to 24 passengers that revolve at a speed of 15 rpm. Agtsch’s afterburner, Freestyle model unlike other versions can only rotate the nacelle in a counterclockwise direction, also has manual control. Thanks to the swinging-radius of 120 degrees, riders’ feet can freely swing in a height of 20 meters. At the vertex, you get a more intense feeling of zero gravity than on regular swings, which makes it one of the entertaining swings at the Oktoberfest.

Owner:  Margarete und Johann Agtsch (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: KMG Europe BV  (Neede, Netherlands)
Year of Construction:
1999

Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 14 x 23 meters / 68.8 x 50 x 75.4 feet
Type: Afterburner
Connection:  80 kW, 125 A
Capacity: 6 gondolas that seats 4 for  total 24 passengers. 480 per hour
Notes: The ride was sold to Franz-Xaver Kollmann (München) in 2021. He redesigned it as the MEXICAN FLIGHT for the 2022 season.

The Flip Fly, belongs in the Inversion category of rides. Manufactured, in several versions, by well-known Dutch company KMG, this seventh version was purchased by owner Thomas Clauß and premiered at the München Oktoberfest in 2009. Flip Fly acts as a kind of swing, at the gondola cross, 4 gondolas are mounted on each of the 3 axis that results in a capacity of 12 people per trip. Unlike conventional swing rides, the pendulum does not swing from the left and right but swings out directly above the heads of the spectators. The pendulum swings back and forth until finally the rollover occurs at a maximum height of 24m. However, this is with the gondolas locked in position. In order to let the gondolas carry out individual rollovers, the gondola boom does not swing the usual 360 degrees, but at 90 degrees which allow the gondolas to loop.

Owner:  Thomas Clauß (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  KMG Europe BV  (Neede, Netherlands)
Year of Construction:
2009

Dimensions (WxDxH):  16 x 20 x 24 meters / 52.4 x 65.6 x 78.7 feet
Type:  Inversion Inversion (Nr. 7)
Connection:  62 kW, 100 A
Capacity: 12 People in 3 Gondolas, 480 Persons per hour
Notes:  Premiered at the München Oktoberfest in 2009
Website:  http://www.clauss-flipfly.de

The spectacular Monster swing ride returned to the 2017 to Oktoberfest under the new name XXL Höhenrausch and a new owner Anja Goetzke, replacing her older Star Flyer ride.  The gondola swings up to 40 meters in the air at an angle of 120 degrees with a deflection of 47 meters from one side to the other and at the same time rotates around its own axis. Additionally, the gondolas spin horizontally, intensifying the feeling of zero gravity at the vertex.  When traversing the station, riders experience a vertical acceleration of up to 4G. The spectacular XXL swing, equipped with LED lighting, offers space for 20 passengers, who are transported to a heightened rush. A monitor is attached to the front of the ride, on which a camera installed on the swing  is used to show what the passengers are currently experiencing in their seats.

Former names:  Until 2016 Monster
Owner: 
Anja Goetzke (München, Germany)
Former owner: 2010-9.13 H. P. Maier (Frauenfeld, Switzerland);  9.2013-2.14 Denies-Kipp (Bonn, Germany); 2014-16 Gebr. Boos (Magdeburg, Germany)
Manufacturer:  KMG Europe BV  (Neede, Netherlands)
Year of Construction: 
2011. updated in 2017

Dimensions (WxDxH):  17 x 14 x 25 meters / 55.7 x 45.9 x 82 feet
Flight altitude:  40 meters / 131.2 feet
Type:  Afterburner XXL
Connection: 150 kW
Capacity:  20 people
Notes: First premiered as Monster 23.04.2010, in Frauenfeld Switzerland.

The topspin is a thrill ride developed and built since 1990 by HUSS Maschinenfabrik (now Huss Rides) from Bremen, and is now the generic name for rides from other manufacturers that follow the same principle. The name top spin is derived from a tennis term. Topspin is the property of a ball that rotates forwards as it is moving causing it to bounce deeper and higher. The ride consists of a passenger platform suspended between two counterweighted arms. The arms are turned by motors, while the platform typically only has brakes that are engaged and disengaged at various points of the ride cycle. A typical top spin program runs the main arm motors while engaging and disengaging the platform brakes so that it will rotate in exciting ways. A fun feature, especially for the audience, is the Wasserfontainen (water fountain) which is mainly used at the end of the ride sequence soaking the riders as they are slowly lowered face first into the inescapable water jets. (Ctnd. Topspin Fresh)

Owner:  Rudolf & Karin Bausch GbR (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen)
Year of Construction: 
1990

Dimensions (WxDxH):  19 x 19 x max. 18 meters / 62.3 x 62.3 x max. 59 feet
Type: Topspin
Connection:  160 kW
Capacity:  40 people
Notes:  Premiered München, Oktoberfest 1990

(Ctnd. from Topspin No. 1)  The ride was designed so that the operators may choose one of eight preset ride programs. Cycles can be customized to include more intense repetitive flips and also be under manual operator control. Most last no more than two minutes and consist of several moderate-speed loops, flips, and face-down gondola hangtime before unlocking the gondola hydraulics and swinging the riders back and forth.  This spectacular but well-tolerated driving effects, produce relatively high G-forces due to the rotation of the nacelle, results in very high gravitational acceleration of up to 30 kmh.  THe top spin ride is configured featuring a theatre-style gondola, that has 40 seats in two rows. These rows are located behind each other in an inclined arrangement with all passengers facing the front of the attraction.

Owner:  Manfred Zehle (München, Germany)
Previous owner: 1993-95 Franz Goetzke (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen)
Year of Construction: 
1993

Dimensions (WxDxH):  19 x 19 x max. 18 meters / 62.3 x 62.3 x max. 59 feet
Type: Topspin
Connection: drive 160 kW, light 80 kW
Capacity:  40 people
Notes:  The Top Spin was once a common ride at travelling funfairs, particularly in Germany. Over time, many of the travelling versions of the ride have been sold to amusement parks.

Jasmin Kaiser’s High Energy that premiered in 2013, is manufactured by the German company Zierer, under the name Star Shape. It gets this name from its 6 gondola arms that are mounted in a star-shaped pattern, each containing five seats. These arms turn in circles at the upper end of a 30 meter long main mast providing the passengers a birds eye view of the entire surrounding landscape. This moment is short-lived. As soon as the gondola rotates past the high point, the main mast nosedives while rotating around its own axis. The single gondola arms also turn at an angle of 360 degrees while three different rotational movements spin the passengers around with their legs dangling freely. With its impressive size and its elaborate tower lighting the High Energy is a landmark and a magnet to visitors and one of the most thrilling, if not the most thrilling, ride on offer.

Owner:  Jasmin Kaiser (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Zierer Karussell- und Spezialmaschinenbau GmbH & Co. KG  (Deggendorf, Germany)
Year of Construction:  2003

Dimensions (WxDxH):  19 x 14 x 28.7 meters / 62.3 x 46 x 94 feet
Type: Star Shape (Nr.1)
Connection:  
Capacity: 30 people, 510 per hour
Notes:  Premiered in 2013
Website: https://siegfried-kaiser.de/new/High-Energy/daten.htm

CyberSpace is the tallest swing at Oktoberfest. Constructed in 2004 by the firm Mondial from the Netherlands, their Capriolo 8 model—the standard for all the other ride variations—was built for owner Alfons Egon Kaiser, of AE Kaiser Freizeittechnologie, from München. The Cyberspace has a giant pendulum arm that forcibly swings the gondola up to a height of about 48 meters and reaches a top speed of around 90 km/h. On this arm there is a gondola that can make 360° rotations around its own axis or can be locked by a brake. The gondola has eight seats that are divided into two rows with four seats each, set back to back. For additional sensation, a propeller is mounted above the gondola, that helps create the feeling of sitting in an air plane. Because the legs of the passengers hang freely and there is no cabin, the feeling of flying is amplified.

Owner:  AE Kaiser Freizeittechnologie (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Mondial Rides (Heerenveen, Netherlands)
Year of Construction: 
2004

Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 15/11 x 30 m, flight altitude max. 46.7 m
Type: Capriolo
Connection:  100 kW
Capacity:  8 people
Notes:  The carousel was sold to the Mellors Group (UK) May 2019.

Türme (Towers)

Break Dancer

The term Ferris wheel probably only came about in the middle of the 20th century. The original name Russe or Russen Rad names seem to have derived from the Russian swing. This designation was described in the literature of the Petersburg Swing Festival of 1794. The earliest reference to a Russian swing comes from the Englishman Peter Mundy, who attended a Turkish Bairam festival in Phillippopolis – today’s Plodov in Bulgaria – in 1620. In his travel journal he describes and sketches two types of swings. The simple wooden construction forms the basis for all further development stages of the Russian swing. The first wooden Russians built in Germany can be attributed to Fritz Bothmann based on the original plans that were found. Franz Gundelwein, a former designer at the Bothmann company, began producing his own Ferris wheels in 1910. Therefore, an exact dating and construction is often not possible, so older wooden Ferris wheels are assigned to Bothmann/Gundelwein.

In 1984 the chief designer of the Huss company, Karl Böhme, presented the design of a new type of carousel under the name “Project 17”. The first sketches are said to have been made in 1980 and a patent applied for in 1981. At first, the showmen showed little interest in this ride , as it was suspected that it was a technical advancement of the Heinrich Mack Calypso, which had already been built in 1958. Although the new construction was more similar to the hula hoop built by Kaspar Klaus in 1959.
Hans-Jürgen Zarnitz gave the “Project 17” the name Break Dancer (with an r at the end), which was related to the film “Breakdance Sensation 84” and the associated soundtrack, which was just starting in the cinemas, and a new acrobatic dance form themed. In 1985, at the Osterwiese on the Bürgerweide in Bremen, the first break dance was delivered and immediately attracted young and older audiences.

The premiere of  Michael Goetzke’s SkyFall drop tower introduced the highest, mobile free-fall tower in the world.  Goetzke’s previously had premiered the first drop tower to the Oktoberfest in 1997 called Free Fall. The 24 passengers are pulled to the top of the tower by means of a steel cable on two hooks that connect the carriage to the gondola. The courage to drive is rewarded with a view into the distance that is still unsurpassed in a mobile tower system. With a gentle jerk and the greatest possible surprise effect, the gondola detaches itself from the hook and falls into the depths without any rope connection. From breathless to loud screams – from a fixed stare to a face overflowing with joy, everything that fits into the gondola moves with you. Shortly before the ground, SkyFall brakes gently with magnetic brakes that work without electricity, ensuring maximum safety. In 2016 the tower received a revamped gondola. As it is now able to spin, so riders can now benefit from an even better view over Munich.

Owner:  Michael Goetzke (München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Funtime Group (East Tyrol, Austria)
Year of Construction: 
2013

Dimensions (WxDxH):  23 x 23 x 80 meters / 75.5 x 75.5 x 262.5 feet
Type:  Freifallturm (Drop tower)
Connection:  250kW
Capacity: 24 passengers 
Notes:  Premiered 21.09.2013 Oktoberfest München
Website:  https://www.goetzke.de/

After the success of Ewald Schneider’s first Power Tower, the successor model, Power Tower II was introduced in 2001, and is the highest transportable free-fall tower in the world. Like the Schneider’s original free fall ride, the Power Tower II was also built by the German manufacturer Maurer-Söhne. With a slender silver-grey latticework tower that reflects the sunlight like a 200 ft long fluorescent light bulb, the Power Tower II is certainly noticeable and to remove any doubt atop the ride a 20ft sign with 10,000 lights begs attention. From a height of about 66 meters, the 32 seat gondola drops 63 meters in less than five-seconds—that’s about 80 km/h—according to the Guinness Book of Records, at a speed of 14 meters per second a world record for drops.  Once reaching the bottom having experienced the drop, a second later immediately bouncing all the way up the tower and back down again.

Owner:  Ewald Schneider (Bielefeld/München, Germany)
Manufacturer: Maurer & Söhne (München, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
2001

Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 22 x 66 meters / 68.9 x 72.2 x 216.5 feet
Type:  Freifallturm (Drop tower)
Connection:  1000 kW
Capacity:
 32 passangers

Notes:  The ride was sold to the Mellors Group (UK)  in July 2019.

Manufactured by Huss (Bremen) in July 1990, the Break Dancer was designed by its owners Albert and Christa Aigner. Currently the Las Vegas theme designed Break Dancer is operated by Albert’s nephew, Mike Roie. The Break Dancer is a so-called whirlwind carousel, designed to give the passengers a feeling of weightlessness or zero-gravity, through the rapid and unpredictability of the driving style. The 20 meter wide circular disc holds 16 gondolas arranged in four groups of four around a nacelle. Each gondola that can contain up to 2 people, sitting side by side, spin around and around with continuous changes in direction and speed. The movements of the gondolas depend on a variety of influences, some of which are random, and some from a passengers skillful shift in body weight. For this reason, the course of a ride is neither foreseeable nor fully controlled by the ride operator or by the passenger.

Owner:  Albert and Christa Aigner
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen)
Year of Construction: 
1990
Painter: Jacques Courtois
Serial number: 53467 

Dimensions (WxDxH):  20 x 20 x 13 meters / 65.6 x 65.6 x 42.7 feet
Type:  Break Dance
Connection:  130 kW
Capacity: 16 gondolas, each with 2 seats
Notes: Sold to Grünberg/Kaiser in 2019

Breakdance No.1 is a whirlwind carousel, constructed by the German company Huss (Bremen) in April 1994 for owners Jörg Grünberg & Tanja Kaiser-Grünberg. The breakdance consists of a slightly inclined turntable, on which four gondola crosses are evenly spaced. At the gondola crosses each four gondolas are attached. In each gondola up to two passengers can sit side-by-side. The turntable and the gondola crosses are driven by electric motors and thereby the gondolas are put into a combined rotation. Similar to the turntable, the gondolas are mounted at an angle to the nacelle crosses, but can swing freely around their own axis. The gondola movement depend son a variety of influences, partly caused by chance and further influenced by the occupants of the gondola. A skillful shift in body weight allows a passenger to place the gondola in a prolonged rotation.

Owner:  Jörg Grünberg & Tanja Kaiser-Grünberg
Manufacturer: Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen)
Painter: Jacques Courtois
Year of Construction:
1994

Dimensions (WxDxH):  20 x 20 x 13 meters / 65.6 x 65.6 x 42.7 feet
Type:  Break Dance
Serial number: 59765
Connection:  130 kW
Capacity:
16 gondolas, each with 2 seats
Notes:
The first Breakdancer-style ride was put into operation in the mid-1980s

Rundfahrgeschäft (Roundabouts)

These are carousels in which the visitors are transported by mechanical power in a fixed circle, for example, toboggan rides, Seesturm-Bahn, Musik Express and others. The history of roundabout rides begins in England in the second half of the 19th century, when the steam engine was developed. The English switchback rides soon found their way to Germany. In Germany, this type of carousel was called a  mountain and valley railway (Berg- und Talbahnen). It was the generic term for merry-go-rounds, the driving style of which left the usual circular shape of a horizontal plane and led to a ride over mountains and valleys. German manufacturers of carousels such as Haase, Bothmann, Heyn or Gundelwein followed the English models, experimented and later developed their own style in decorative equipment. In 1926 Bothmann built the first caterpillar. Heyn and Gundelwein followed in 1936 with the first sea storm railways.

After the Second World War, the Heinrich Mack company began constructing bumper cars, and also mountain and valley railways. They were called Zugspitzbahn, Bobbahn or Weißer Traum because of their wintry painting. These rides were formerly known as the Berg- und Talbahn, and became the most frequently built carousels in Germany. The design description includes three structural stages of development, beginning with the construction of the first cable car in 1890 and ending with the technically mature design at the end of the 20th century. The changing decorative styles of a carousel type, which was built over 100 years and exported from Germany to all continents, are of art-historical interest. 

Sources Referenced: Margit Ramus

The railway carousel Fahrt ins Paradies (Ride to Paradise) was built in 1939 by the famous carousel factory Friedrich Heyn in the Thuringian town of Neustadt an der Oda. Unfortunately, its then owner, Jacob Pfeiffer from Bruchmühlen, fell during World War II and therefore could not operate the mountain and valley train. For years, Pfeiffer’s heir had stored the railway in a shed in Kaiserslautern. It was rediscovered in 2003 by Toni and Jakob Schleifer, who with great attention to detail, over time, continued to restore the original wooden carriages, paintings, and graceful figures, until its 16 colorful carriages shone again in their old splendor. The ride is configured with sixteen carriages each with one or two riders travel almost 40 km/h of fast turns, as the mountain and valley train races its guests through the mountains and valleys. Since the Jubilee Wiesn in 2010, the Fahrt ins Paradies has been part of the Oide Wiesn.

Owner:  Toni and Jakob Schleifer (Zülpich, Germany)
Previous Owner: Jakob Pfeiffer (Bruchmühlen);   3.2003 Walter Pfeiffer (Bruchmühlen); in storage 1955-2010
Manufacturer:  Karussellfabrik Friedrich Heyn (Thuringian, Germany)
Year of Construction:
  1939

Dimensions (Dia xH): diameter 16 meters, height 8 meters, diameter 52.5 feet, height 26.25 feet
Type:  Berg- und Talbahn
Connection:  15 kW
Capacity:  32 people in 16 gondolas
Notes:  The railway ride was stored in a shed in 1955 by Jakob Pfeiffer and was discovered 55 years later by Toni and Jakob Schleifer, who restored the ride

The name of the Münchner Zugspitzbahn refers to the Zugspitze Railway, which was opened in 1930, six years before its Munich counterpart was built. This makes it the oldest thrill ride at the Oktoberfest. The Zugspitzbahn is a very fast variant of the classic caterpillar ride with swinging cars and steep hills. The extraordinarily decorated ride is the oldest, still travelling one of its kind and even older than the carousels at the Oide Wiesn. Despite the year of construction 1936, this traditional ride is really round. In the middle of late summer, the two- seater white-and-blue gondolas race swiftly around the snowman and the dreamy and snowy mountain world, shaking the passengers along the way. Thanks to centrifugal force, the person sitting on the inside is always pushed against the strong shoulder of the person sitting on the outside. So, my dear men, sit on the outside if you don’t want to squash your date.

Former names:  Until 1939  SCHLICKERBAHN
Owner:  Michael Menzel (München, Germany)
Previous owner: until 1937 Seiferth

Manufacturer:  Karussellfabrik Friedrich Heyn (Thuringian, Germany)
Type: Berg- und Talbahn
Year of Construction:  1936
Dimensions (Dia xH): diameter 16 meters, height 8 meters / diameter 52.5 feet, height 26.25 feet
Capacity:  32 people in 16 gondolas

Notes:  The name of the Münchner Zugspitzbahn refers to the Zugspitze Railway, which was opened in 1930, six years before its Munich counterpart was built.

For anyone who does not enjoy stomach churning rides then Helmut Zehle’s Musik Express is well suited especially for the younger family members. The Musik Express was ride based on the original Caterpillar rides of Germany, and is a modern adaption of the famous Harry Traver Caterpillar rides. The ride itself was built in the 1974 by Franz Mack (Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG) and was the bestseller for the rides and carousels manufacturer. The family still operates the Musik Express today by son Manfred.  The ride features 23-passenger cars connected in a circle and these cars rotate on a track with alternating sloped and flat sections.  The steep hills and descents almost create a roller coaster experience, the centrifugal force pushes the passengers together. Rotation is possible in both a backward and forward direction, as the ride is manually operated. Lights and music are also controlled by the operator, which contribute heavily to the ride experience.

Owner:  Helmut Zehle (Germany)
Manufacturer:  Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG   (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction: 
1974

Dimensions (WxDxH):  19 x 18 x 8 meters / 62.3 x 59 x 26.2 feet
Type:  2-column music express/mountain railway
Connection:  50 kW, 100A
Capacity:  23 cars
Notes: The carousel was named Musikexpress by the manufacturer became Heinrich Mack’s most built carousel. Over 200 systems, were built, each individually decorated and given a wide variety of names.

The Calypso is one of the most popular rides of the Oide Wiesn. Its attraction lies in the nostalgia, which reminds many passengers of past, beautiful Oktoberfest moments. Since 2010, the colorful cars on the Oide Wiesn make their rounds again. In 1958 the carousel manufacturer Mack from Waldkirch delivered the original first Calypso to Anton Bausch and Eugen Distel from Munich. A fashion dance from South America not only inspired the naming, but also the ingenious construction. With the typical ’50s design and its rapid ride and unpredictable changes of direction, this ride quickly became a crowd pleaser. Even today, the Calypso compared with modern rides offering ever newer thrills, the Calypso easily keep up. In 1987 Hubert Winheim, from Ingolstadt, acquired the carousel. Due to the illness of the new owner, the carousel was stored for several years.  After elaborate restoration and renewal it was ready for Oktoberfest reappearance which came at the historic  Jubilee Oktoberfest of  2010.

Owner:  Hubert Winheim (Ingolstadt, Germany)
Previous owner:  1966-68 Dom Company (München, Germany);  1969 – 75 Guderley Company; Edmund Eckl (München, Germany);  until 1987 Jeanette Eckl-Stey (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Painter:  Heinz Opitz Sr. and Heinz-Werner Opitz
Year of Construction:  1965/66
Dimensions (WxD):  20 x 20 meters / 65.6 x 65.6 feet 
Type:  Calypso
Connection: 50 kW
Capacity: 32 people in 16 gondolas
Notes:  During 1958 -1974 a total of 19 Calypso rides were built for the German market. This was Calypso No. 6 – Cathedral

The Playball—a pinball type ride—is the prototype of the current Flipper ride from German manufacturer Huss built in 1987. With the addition of Helmut Zehle’s Flipper in 2013, there has been two pinball type amusement rides at the Oktoberfest, both built by the Huss company. The 12 gondolas are mounted on the patented, diagonally positioned axle on the circumference of the wheel, which is about 14 m in diameter. The speed of the Playball can be varied, and also the entire carousel disc can be pivoted to almost 45 degrees. With the rotation and steady lifting movements from the slanted gondola axles, very different accelerations and delays are caused, creating a very attractive and fast, but quite pleasant carousel ride.  At the end of the 2017 Wies’n the era of playball under the family Claus also came to an end. The new owner of the playball is the Meyer family who own  a break dance ride in Formula 1 design.

Owner:  Meyer & Sohn GbR (Stahnsdorf-Güterfelde, Germany)
Previous owner:  1987 until 9.2017 Clauß (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen, Germany)
Painter: 
Jacques Courtois
Year of Construction:  
Dimensions (WxDxH): 22 x 22.5 x 12 meters / 72.1 x 73.8 x 39.3 feet
Type:  Flipper (Nr. 1)
Connection:  120 kW
Capacity:  48 people in 12 gondolas
Notes:  Huss began building the Flipper ride in 1987, over the production lifetime 73 Flippers were constructed.

Between 2013 to 2017 there have been two pinball amusement rides at the Oktoberfest, both manufactured by the Bremen based company Huss. One is the Playball owned by Clauß and the other pinball machine, Flipper now operated by Hartmut Langhoff. In 1985, as a further development of the successful Calypso carousel by Heinrich Mack, Huss succeeded in outperforming all competing German carousel construction companies in the construction of new carousel types with the Break Dance. and the Flipper in 1987. Constructed in 1991, Helmut Zehele was the seventh owner of this Flipper until he sold it in 2018 to Hartmut Langhoff, a showman from Plettenberg. The 14 oscillating and rotating gondolas are located on a 22 meter rotating disc, which can be tilted up to 50 degrees, rotate the gondolas up to a height of 14 meters. These gondolas spin around on their own suspension due to the acceleration, building up a high rotational speed that offers a fast driving thrill.

Owner:  Hartmut Langhoff (Plettenberg, Germany)
Previous owner: 1991 Kipp (Bonn, Germany); 1992-95 Barth (Bonn, Germany); 1995-97 Hohl (Stuttgart, Germany); 1999-01 Raschemann/Lüddecke (Velten, Germany); 2002 One year in Switzerland (Expo);  2003-12 Klaus Rudolf Schneider (Dortmund, Germany); 2012-18 Helmut Zehele (Augsburg, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen, Germany)
Painter:  Jacques Courtois
Year of Construction:  1991
Dimensions (WxDxH):  22 x 22.5 x 14 meters / 72.1 x 73.8 x 46 feet
Type:  Flipper
Connection:  120 kW
Capacity:  48 people in 12 gondolas
Notes:  Huss began building the Flipper ride in 1987, over the production lifetime 73 Flippers were constructed.

For many, the Krinoline is the epitome of the classic Oktoberfest ride, even though it’s not the oldest ride having first appeared in 1924, it’s the fact, that it still has its own traditional brass band, that makes it so famous. Great-great-grandparents Maria and Michael Großmann, added the original 5-man brass band in 1938, for which they built a small balcony on the outer wall of the carousel. Today the Krinoline is run by the Dutch families fourth generation Matthias Niederländer and his wife Helene (Leni), who continues to employ the original Krinoline brass band and frequent guests; Veterinary Street Jazz Band, Tiny Bubbles Jazz Band, and G-Rag and Landlergschwister. The rolling platform, reminiscent of a lady’s crinoline, tumbles around and up and down, while passengers in the cosy,  welcoming half-open Belle Epoque gondolas, enjoy the ride at a tranquil pace that reaches a top speed of 15 km/h.

Original Name:  Grossmanns Pracht-Elektro-Krinoline
Owner: 
Niederländer family  (München, Germany)
Previous owner:  Maria and Michael Großmann (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Bought from a Berlin company
Year of Construction:  1924, electrified in 1936
Dimensions (WxDxH):  16 x  16 x 7 meters / 52.5 x 52.5 x 23 feet
Type:  Krinoline
Connection:  4.5kW drive power, 20kW power & lightning
Capacity:  16 gondolas
Notes:  Marion Niederländer’s great-grandparents, the showmen Maria and Michael Großmann, first set up the crinoline at the Oktoberfest in 1924. Since 1981 the Krinoline has exclusively appeared at the Oktoberfest in Munich.
Website:  https://www.krinoline.de/Historie/

Manufactured by the German company Schwarzkopf, the Sound Factory was an extreme version of the company’s Polyp ride with the addition of rollover cars. Purchased by the Kinzler family in 1996, they operated the ride until 2000. Andreas Aigner from München, the current owner obtained the ride and commissioned the German manufacturer Gerstlauer Amusement Rides to convert it to a Suspended Polyp, to be operated under the name Parkour. Dynamic turns, quick changes between almost weightless to several g-forces, contribute to the Suspended Polyp being a fantastic ride for the whole family. Just as a Parkour athlete chooses the shortest and most efficient way from A to B and easily overcome all obstacles encountered, the Parkour ride offers up-and-down movements in four directions. With an enhanced seating concept, twenty suspended gondolas each seating two riders reaches an altitude of eight meters. High spirits are guaranteed even without looping and guarantees a complete new ride experience.

Previous name:  1996 -2008 SOUND FACTORY
Owner: 
Andreas  Aigner (München, Germany)
Previous owner:  1996-08 Menzel/Kinzler (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Schwarzkopf Industries GmbH (Bavaria, Germany); Conversion by Gerstlauer Amusement Rides
Year of Construction:  1996, conversion 2008/09
Dimensions (WxDxH): 23 x 23 x 14 meters /  75.5 x 75.5 x 46 feet
Type:  Absoluter / Suspended Polyp
Connection:  250 kW
Capacity:  40 people in 20 gondolas
Notes: The ride travelled until the end of 1999, only appearance in 2000 was at the Oktoberfest Munich, then it was in storage until the conversion in 2008/09.

The Taumler (Tumbler) was built by the German manufacturer Hutterer & Höpler in 1961 for the family Lechner. Current operator Peter Lechner continues the family tradition started in 1963, of consistently attending the Oktoberfest, the exceptions were the years 1998-99, and 2017.  The rides movement is the same as a Rotor or Gravitron and is mainly suited to young people. Passengers seated on a circular platform spin around and around in a clockwise direction, moving up and up and down on a 50° angle using centrifugal force to keep them in place.  At maximum acceleration the ride completes a loop in 4 seconds. With a diameter of 9 meters on which about 30 people can take a seat the hydraulic system of the Tumbler accelerates the cycle up to 14 revolutions per minute. The rocking motion is generated by compressed air, which acts on 2 pneumatic cylinders and moves the carousel up and down.

Owner: Peter Lechner (München)
Manufacturer:  Hutterer & Höpler  (D)
Year of Construction:  1961
Dimensions (WxDxH):  9 x 9 x meters / 29.5 x 29.5 x feet
Type:  Schunkler (Prototyp)
Connection:  22 kW hydraulic system
Capacity:  30 people
Notes:  Unfortunately, after almost 60 years, the requirements of the TÜV have become so high that further operation is not economically viable. In all these years, no passenger has been injured due to a technical defect.
Website: https://lechner-karussell.de/taumler.html

The Predator celebrated its premiere at the Munich Oktoberfest in 2018. The ride in the upside-down ride Predator is spectacular and not for the faint-hearted. Those who decide to ride will experience the following: when the safety bars have been closed, the journey begins. While the platform of the Predator turns to the left, the gondola itself turns to the right in the opposite direction. It’s already too late to get off, because the gondola is raised on two masts. And if you think that’s exciting, you haven’t gotten to the top yet. Then things really get going: The gondola flips over at a maximum height of 16 meters and a speed of 60 km/h. Here, the adrenaline kick is included. Showman Kaiser bought the ride in 2014 and had it completely redesigned. Previously the Predator had several owners, and was known under the names “Transformer 2” and “Star Gate.”

Previous owner:  under Schmidt TRANSFORMER II, 1998-2013 STAR-GATE
Owner:  Willy Kaiser (München, Germany)
Previous owner: 1997 Rolf Schmidt (Stuttgart, Germany); 1998-03 Avi (München, Germany); 2004-06 Snep (Netherlands);  9.2007-13 Ernst & Agtsch (München, Germany), 2010-13 in storage; 2014 Reiner Löffelhardt & Söhne (Erftstadt, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Soriani & Moser (I)
Year of Construction:  1997/8, redesigned 2013/14
Dimensions (WxDxH): 23 x 23 x 16 meters / 75.5 x 75.5 x 52.5 feet
Type:  Top Star Tour
Connection:  250 kW
Capacity:  40 People
Notes:  Premiered Straubing, Gäuboden folk festival 1997

The Raupenbahn, a caterpillar track of Peter Buchholz is not only the oldest, but also the most beautiful and largest of its kind. Built in 1926 by Fritz Bothmann, of Gotha, the Raupenbahn is a variant of the mountain and valley track rides, which began appearing at festivals in 1925. The first owner of the Raupenbahn, Gertrud and Stefan Tusch from Krefeld ran the ride until the end of the 60s when the Buchholz family took over. Buchholz brings the Raupenbahn with 24 cars to the Oide Wiesn. About 60 percent of the caterpillar track still consists of original 1926 components. It was airbrush painted in 1993/94 by the Gütersloh painter Harry Will with rock ‘n’ roll motifs. The memorable part of the ride occurs during the final phase, when the previously folded roof slides over the gondolas, protecting the passengers from the spectators gaze, that are teased by the ‘kissing is allowed’ signs.

Owner:  Steiger-Buchholz (Oberhausen, Germany)
Previous owner: Jean Rosenzweig; 1950s to late 1960s Gertrud und Stefan Tusch (Krefeld, Germany);  Tusch-Steiger; Fredy & Cilly Steiger
Manufacturer:  Fritz Bothmann (Gotha, Germany)
Painter: Repainted in 1993/94 by Harry Will (Gütersloh, Germany)
Year of Construction:  1926
Dimensions (WxD):  Diameter 22 meters / 72.1 feet
Type:  Berg- und Talbahn
Connection:  
Capacity: 24 cars
Notes:  

Round the Tegernsee, thanks to its extremely charming design, apparently a tongue-in-cheek homage to the Heimat films of the 1960s, this carousel has stayed around. It was in the mid-1960s that the father of the former operator got the idea for this ride overnight while vacationing at Lake Tegernsee. The next morning he took a cake, cut and carved it, used cake, biscuits and gummy bears to form a model of an amusement ride unlike any seen before. For example, the waterfall is a replica of a real waterfall that was located near that hotel. The model went to a manufacturer, and the result since 1967 has been the Rund um den Tegernsee.  Around the Tegernsee is a classic example of the modern fairground rides, especially when Rock’n Roll music is playing. The lovingly designed track , which was taken over by showman Christopher Zettl, leads around a small lake, under a rushing waterfall and from time to time the water witch spits a stream of water in the direction of the passengers.

Owner:  Christoph Zettl (München, Germany)
Previous owner: until 2016 Wilhelm Hohmann (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Schwarzkopf und Zierer (Germany)
Year of Construction:  1966/7
Dimensions (WxDxH): 23 x 23 x 9 meters / 75.5 x  75.5 x  29.5 feet
Type:  Rundfahrgeschäfte
Connection:  66 kW
Capacity: 68 People
Notes:  The ride is the only roundabout ride at the Wiesn that does not have a central structure . The cars always drive around the circuit like a caterpillar, every second one has an electric motor that keeps the whole thing going.
Website: https://www.facebook.com/

Manfred Eckl’s Techno Power is high-round ride originally designed and built by the companies Tivoli (NL) and KMG (NL). The rotating body rotates counterclockwise, moves upwards and with increasing speed, the boom ends fold up hydraulically with the gondola triangles. During the ride, the speed of the triangles increases, the gondolas tilt 90 degrees and the passengers begin to feel the 4G acceleration power as the suspended gondolas spin. Due to the multiple fast turning movements passengers forget where the top, the bottom, the back and the front are. Another fun factor is the ride is complemented by a DJ who plays fast techno tunes. This is unique even on the Wiesn—actually the only ride in Germany with live DJ—gives the ride its name. The combination of live music and a carousel ride with adrenaline rush guarantee makes the Techno Power the crinoline of the 21st century.

Owner:  Manfred Eckl (München, Germany)
Previous owner: 1997 – 05 Küchenmeister (Dortmund, Germany); 2006 – 08 Bauer (Switzerland)
Manufacturer:  Tivoli Enterprises (Great Britain) and KMG B.  V. (Netherlands) 
Year of Construction:  1997
Dimensions (WxDxH): 20 x 21 meters / 
Type:  Extreme
Connection:  125 kW
Capacity: 36 people in 18 gondolas
Website:
http://www.eckl-entertainment.de

Devil’s wheel, Teufelsrad, Human Roulette Wheel or Joy Wheel is an amusement ride seen at Oktoberfest since 1908 with showman and businessman Carl Gabriel (also the owner of the hippodrome and various ethnological exhibitions).  Today’s Teufelsrad was acquired by Rudolf Feldl at the end of the 1940s and gave it a new look. After the death of Rudolf Feldl in 1970, the Teufelsrad was run by his wife Betty until her death in 2002, and passed over to Elisabeth Polaczy and Veronika Kugler. Since its introduction in 1908 the novelty ride turned out to be such a success, that several copies followed, but only the original Teufelsrad survived. The Teufelsrad ride consists of a horizontal, rotatable wooden disc about five meters in diameter, that constantly increases speed in order to challenge riders to sit on as long as is possible to win the round. The Feldl’s Teufelsrad, is only set up at the Oktoberfest.

Owner:  Elisabeth Polaczy, Franz-Josef Fesenmayer, Veronika Kugler, Ludwig Kugler GbR,  (München, Germany)
Previous owner: Rudolf Feldl & family (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Carl Gabriel
Year of Construction:  1908, rebuilt 1972
Dimensions (WxDxH):   meters /   feet
Type:  
Connection:   kW
Notes:  At Oktoberfest since 1908
Website: 
http://teufelsrad.com/

The Voodoo-Jumper is a carousel, which freely-spinning cars are mounted to large arms, which jump up and down. This movement is supposed to make the riders get a feeling of zero gravity. In this family-friendly round-the-way business, the passenger is properly whirled around. The carousel was built by the Italian manufacturer Fabbri in 2012 especially for the Hans Otto Schäfer jr and family.  A special feature of this ride is the painting was not done by the usual airbrush technique, but by a painter with brush and paint that took six-weeks. The ride allows 24 different driving programs, enhanced with themed soundtracks and fully equipped with colorful LED lighting effects. If the weather is right, water comes into play, which can also hit the surrounding spectators. Fire spews a Vukan in the middle, and fog can be thrown violently, which enhances the visual effects differently depending on the time of day.

Owner:  Hans Otto Schäfer (Schwerte, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Fabbri Group (Italy)
Year of Construction:  2012
Dimensions (WxDxH):  22 x 20 x 9.65 meters /  72.2 x 25.6 x 31.6 feet
Type:  Speed Jumper
Connection:  200 kW
Capacity: 24 people in 12 gondolas
Notes: Premiere: Münster, Sommersend June 2012
Website:
http://www.voodoo-jumper.de/

The Enterprise type of ride was manufactured primarily by HUSS Park Attractions and by Anton Schwarzkopf beginning in 1972. The HUSS ride, is an adaptation and improvement of Schwarzkopf’s ride, has an increased passenger capacity and a hydraulic arm.  The ride is named after USS Enterprise from the TV series Star Trek, is typically decorated with space-themed art and a silhouette of the starship Enterprise. Petra Zehle (München) purchased the Huss built Enterprise ride in 1978 renaming the ride Mondlift (Moonlift). On the Mondlift ride, up to two people sit in one of 20 gondolas arranged one sitting behind the other. The ride rotates clockwise, dispelling just enough centrifugal force to keep its riders perfectly in place. A hydraulically powered arm underneath the ride then raises and tilts the frame so that the ride is rotating at 87° from the horizontal, transforming the ride from a horizontal experience to a nearly vertical one.

Former name:  1978 – 2014 MOONLIFT (English spelling of Mondlift)
Owner:  Petra Zehle, Mondlift GmbH (München, Germany)
Previous owner:  Manfred Zehle (Munich, Germany) until 8.2014
Manufacturer:  Huss Park Attractions GmbH (Bremen, Germany) and Schwarzkopf Industries GmbH (Bavaria, Germany)
Year of Construction:  1978
Dimensions (WxDxH): 22 x 22 meters / 72.2 x 72.2 feet
Type:  Enterprise
Connection:  90 kW
Capacity:  40 total, 2 people each of the 20 gondolas
Notes:  Since 2015 the only example of the Huss classic still traveling in Germany

Wasserbahnen (Water Rides)

A wild water ride is a water ride at folk festivals and in amusement parks . The principle is based on a wooden giant that was used to transport felled tree trunks from the mountains. The boats, which are often designed like tree trunks, swim in canals with flowing water and travel down descents. As early as the beginning of the 20th century, there were boat rides with boats propelled by water currents in amusement parks. These were mostly designed as themed Dark Rides. The first stationary white water ride in today’s sense, built by the company Arrow, was opened in 1963 in the amusement park Six Flags Over Texas . It was mainly developed by Karl Bacon and Ed Morgan. The first European version was built in 1967 in the English amusement park Blackpool Pleasure Beach.  In Germany, the Arrow tracks were produced under license by the Mack company, until the company developed its own variant after a short time.

In addition to the stationary systems in parks, transportable tracks for folk festivals were also built from the early 1980s. Mack started things off in 1982 with a ride for the Löwenthal family of showmen . The first problem was sealing the gutters. However, as experience grew, this problem was resolved. Eight mobile systems are currently traveling in Germany. The largest transportable railway in the world was the Wildwasser 3 , built in 1992 by the Bremen showman Joachim Löwenthal. It has a base area of ​​60 × 40 meters and a height of 26 meters. The total weight is 1,000 tonne. So-called side loaders are used for transport to the train station , which are also used to transport the 60 m Ferris wheels . A total of 60-65 railway wagons are required to move the wild water ride. The purchase price in 1992 was 12 million DM.

The wild water ride Poseidon – In the realm of the gods, is one of the largest mobile large white water rides. Markus Heitmann from Schneider-Heitmann OhG brought this spectacular but family-friendly ride to the Oktoberfest for the first time in 2019.  The journey in the 13 boats in a wooden trunk design, each with up to five passengers on board, leads over a length of 320 meters, 250 meters of which is in the water, through a Greek temple ruin. Nike, the goddess of victory in Greek mythology, towers in the middle of the track as a 15 meter high statue, guarded by monumental temple guards. The large wild water ride built in 1986 by the French vehicle manufacturer Reverchon and modernized in 2001 to become the Poseidon.  Two shot rides from a height of twelve and seven meters tickle the nerves of the passengers, who, thanks to the latest safety technology, can enjoy the splashy ride over / through 250,000 liters of water without any worries.

Former name: until 2001 WILD RIVER
Owner:
Schneider-Heitmann OhG (Münster, Germany)
Previous owner:  1986 – 90 Göbel (Worms, Germany);  Spreepark – former amusement park (Berlin, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Reverchon (France)
Year of Construction:  1986, rebuilt 2001
Dimensions (WxDxH):  21 x 49.5 x 15 meters / 68.9 x 64 x 49.2 feet
Rafting Length: 300 meters / 974.3 feet
Type:  Wildwasserbahn
Connection:  100 kW
Capacity:  13 boats each with 5 people, (65 people)
Notes:  The rise is the only wild water ride in Greek design, the fairground visitor is encouraged to let themselves be captured by the legendary mythology of the ancient Greeks.
Website: https://www.heitmann-schaustellerbetrieb.de/

In 2011 a new kind of water ride made its way to the Oktoberfest. In contradiction to the log rides, Siegfried Kaiser Jr.’s Rio Rapidos has only very mild slopes, which makes it suitable for smaller children, that are afraid of the way faster taller water rides.  On the brand-new Rio Rapidos rafting attraction built by French manufacturer Cedeal Rides, 24 people in 6 rafting boats, rotate 360° down the 200m long white-water channel, where the current decides the travel direction.  For more than two minutes riders enjoy spray-splashing rapids, torrents and a veritable waterfall through the fast water-slide section following the pull to the top of the ride and a slower, rafting-like part make the ride in the Rio Rapidos a wet, cheerful but family friendly rafting adventure. In the evening  the ride is highlighted by elaborate and colorful LED lighting which brings the ride to life.  In contradiction to the log rides, Rio Rapidos has only very mild slopes, which makes it suitable for smaller children, are afraid of the way faster taller water rides.

Owner: Sasha Kaiser
Manufacturer: 
Cedeal Rides  (Samois-sur-Seine, France)
Year of Construction:
  2011
Dimensions (WxDxH): 
42 x 19.5 x 15 meters / 137.8 x 64 x 49.2 feet
Rafting length: 
200 meters / 656.2 feet
Type:  
Wildwasserbahn
Connection:  130 kW
Capacity: 
6 to 9 (4 seater boats). 700 people per hour
Notes: 
Oktoberfest premiere in 2012
Website:  https://www.siegfried-kaiser.de/home/

The Löwenthal’s Wildwasserbahn is the world’s biggest portable wild water ride. It’s more than 90 feet tall, splashes right into the water, and reaches a speed of more than 30 mph. The Wildwasserbahn makes a backward journey into the dark cave of the labyrinth to where sweaty and laboring miners, waterpitters and prisoners end their miserable existence. Experience an adventure through the mystery of a silver mine – explosions, rockfalls and waterfalls. It’s a little bit like a whitewater rafting trip. At any rate, the 6 minute ride is entertaining. A truly gigantic company, which needs a lot of water with 700 cubic meters. Here in Munich, like all urban water comes from the Mangfalltal and is drinking water quality. The water pumps are extremely powerful: 1,400 liters of water have to be pumped up again every second, so that the next slide really does slip. The 6-million- euro rides business weighs 1,000 tons, and requires two special trains with 60 to 65 cars to transport the ride from one place to another.

Owner: Joachim Löwenthal (Bremen, Germany)
Manufacturer: Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG   (Waldkirch, Germany)
Year of Construction:  1992
Dimensions (WxDxH): 40 x 60 x 30 meters / 131.2  x 196.9 x 98.4 feet
Rafting length:  360 meters / 1,181.1 feet
Type:  
Wildwasserbahn
Capacity:  4 people per boat, 1,200 people/hour
Notes:  The ride premiered at  Stuttgart, Wasen, on 26.09.1992. This wild water ride has been permanently installed in the Skyline Park in Bad Wörishofen since 2018.

Autoskooter (Bumper/Dodgem Cars)

Bumper cars or dodgems are the generic names for a type of flat amusement ride consisting of multiple small electrically powered cars which draw power from the floor and/or ceiling, and which are turned on and off remotely by an operator. Bumper cars are also known as known as dodgem cars because that’s what the original inventors, brothers Max, and Harold Stoehrer of Methuen, Massachusetts, called them. The original cars were not meant to bump because they could easily fall apart. The thrill was in giving kids a chance to drive and avoid hitting the other cars. That’s why they were called dodgem – the whole point was to dodge the other car while steering around a track with a ton of other cars. It was only years later that crashing became the point, not dodging. After two years of development, the brothers created the car. They filed a patent for the invention on Dec. 7, 1920,  and created a new company called the Dodgem Company.

Some credit Victor Levand, an employee with General Electric, with creating the technology that led to the bumper car. Only recently has it become known that Fritz Bothmann in the early 1920s built bumper cars. First under the name of Pleasure Train or Avus Train, later Electric Highway. In western Germany, the Heinrich Lindner family is said to have had the first bumper cars in 1927, imported from the USA.  During their heyday, from the late 1920s to 1950s, two major US bumper cars brands were Dodgem by Max and Harold Stoehrer and the Lusse Brothers’ Auto-Skooter by Joseph and Robert ‘Ray’ Lusse.  The Lusse Brothers machine shop in Philadelphia supplying roller coaster parts to Philadelphia Toboggan by 1922, had filed the first of eleven patents they were to apply for in the next nine years in the process of perfecting the bumper car.

This is one of the great classics and has been at the Wiesn as far back as 1938 thanks to the Lindner family who, themselves have had a presence at the Wiesn since 1880 with various rides. In the early twenties of the last century, her grandfather, Willi Lindner brought one of the first bumper cars from America to Europe. Today’s scooter, the fourth in the family ownership, is operated by Hanneliese Lindner. Hanneliese’s autoscooter has a Mack company 8-pillar-autoscooter with a large 32 x 18m sized floor, that was constructed in 1963-64. The chaise is from the well-known French company Reverchon. The attraction is equipped with a LED lighting system that allows for considerable energy savings with the solar panels on the roof of the track, it’s the right mix between the traditional and the modern rides. There is also a special romantic Herzl-decorated wedding scooter Die Braut Kutsch’n (The Bride Kisses).

Owner: Hanneliese Lindner
Manufacturer:  Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Chaises:  Reverchon (France)
Year of Construction:  1963/1964
Dimensions (WxDxH):  32 x 18 meter /  105 x 59 feet
Type:  8-column-autoscooter
Connection:  90 kW 
Capacity:   
Notes:  Premiered Maidult Regensburg (Germany), 1964 

For several decades, the bumper car of the family Distel has been present at the Oktoberfest and thus belongs to the longest-serving showmen. Heinz Distel introduced the typical chip (coin/token) required for a for a bumper car in 1958, which one has to throw in before driving off and is still the standard today. For the 2018 season, the Distel bumper car was given a new look that is well worth seeing. A new back wall scenery in a creative graphic novel style now adorns the scooter hall and fills it with new life. And since mid-2018, the bumper car has had new chaises, purchasing 30 of the New York models from the renowned Italian manufacturer Bertazzon (Italy). In addition to flashing cornering lights, chrome-plated and illuminated exhaust pipes and optimized headlights, a unique underbody lighting is new. In the dark, this makes the vehicles appear to “float” over the driving surface.

Owner:  Heiner Distel (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Gosetto (Italy)
Chaises:  New York by Bertazzon 3B SRL (Italy)
Chaises engine: DC Electric Motor 60-110V (25-50V Floor pick-up) with Driving power0,8 kW
Year of Construction:  2006/7
Dimensions (WxD):  32 x 18 m / 105 x 59 feet
Type:   4-column-autoscooter
Connection:  70 kW 
Capacity:  30 cars
Notes:   The Distel Bumper Car facade now has more than 100,000 lighting points in LED technology which knows no limits in programming.
Website:  http://www.schausteller-distel.de/

For years, Kurt Geier Jr. has run the nostalgic autoscooter ride in the Old Wiesn. Beginning in 2016 Geier was also awarded a place in the main Oktoberfest area with his main business, the 2-pillar hydraulic bumper car Bayern Crash, which has been a popular ride at many festivals in and around the Munich area and throughout Bavaria. Bayern Crash under Kurt Geier is closely associated with Munich. The facade of the Bayern Crash has been redesigned with new images done by artist Atelier Siefert. Siefert’s designs feature various Munich and Bavarian motifs.

Owner: Kurt Geier Jr. (München, Germany)
Former owner: Hempen (Oldenburg)
Manufacturer:
Painter:  facade by Atelier Siefert
Year of Construction:  
Dimensions (WxDxH): 
Type:  2-pillar-autoscooter
Connection:   kW 
Capacity:   people
Notes:  The complete ride is operated with M-Ökostrom Wiesn-Power
Website:  https://www.geiersschaustellerbetriebe.de

Since 1981, at the age of 18 years, Egon Menzel has run the family owned the ride known as Super Skooter Rally 2000, the first eight years, together with his grandmother Paula Menzel until she died in 1989. Since 1961, the family has been running the 2-pillar Scooter autoscooter alone with the Zugspitzbahn. The ride was originally built by the Italian manufacturer Cosmont s.r.l, as a 2-column autoscooter ride for original Dutch owner Stuij in 1978. Menzel’s autoscooter with its elaborate formula 1 deco style, feature 25 model Toyko chaisen from another Italian company, Bertazzon. The Super Skooter name at one was spelt with a C instead of the current K. The ride covers nearly 450 square meter track on which the cars run between 6-10 km/h. The ride is popular with the youngsters at the Oktoberfest in the evenings as the predominant rap and R&B music blasts from oversized speakers.

Owner: Egon Menzel
Previous owner: Stuij (Netherlands)
Manufacturer:  Cosmont s.r.l,  (Bibbiano RE, Italy)
Chaises: Toyko chaisen by Bertazzon 3B SRL (Italy)
Year of Construction: 
1978

Dimensions (WxDxH): 
Type:  2-column autoscooter
Connection:   kW 
Capacity:   25 cars
Notes:  
Website:  

Bernhard and Sabine Kollmann’s “Scooter Zone” scooter , built in 1999, is one of the youngest in terms of the date of manufacture and is therefore one of the most modern among the scooters at the Oktoberfest. Manufacturer is the Belgian company Adesco. With the basic dimensions 12×24 m (depth x width) the Landwermann / Adesco 2-column-scooter features  the Chaisen type Karma 2000 – New Edition, the most modern series from French manufacturer Reverchon. The lighting is also interesting: “Dichroic” point spotlights in front (= bluish different coloring depending on the viewing angle), unbreakable front bluish chrome-plated parabolic headlights with three lights under the glass on the left and right lead to significantly better lighting, which is what you get on midsummer days Beginning of the Oktoberfest, when everything was bathed in blazing sunlight, especially beautiful during the day.

Owner: Bernhard & Sabine Kollmann (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Landwermann (Nienburg, Germany) / Adesco (Belgium)
Chaises: Reverchon Karma 2000 – New Edition
Year of Construction:  1999
Dimensions (WxD): 32 x 16 meters /  x 52.5 feet
Type:  2-column-autoscooter
Connection:  85 KW / 180 amp 
Capacity:   people
Notes:  In 2009, some 1-man scooters were added, in which you sit like in a go-cart.

The family Steinhart have been showmen with more than more than 75 years of experience. As early as 1938, Georg Trifellner, grandfather of current owner Waltraud Steinhart appeared at the Munich Oktoberfest with deliciously mouth-watering ice cream and in 1957, with a children’s carousel. Since 2001 grandchildren Werner & Waltraud Steinhart have been running the children’s carousel in addition to the autoscooter. Steinhart’s 2-Pillar-Autoscooter was originally manufactured in 1974 by the German company, Heinrich Mack Carousel and carriage construction.  Later in 1992 the chaise was updated replacing the original with the French manufacturer Reverchon, using the Chaisen model Cobra equipped with the Furyo Engine. With ramps added to the ride, Steinhart’s autoscooter and a chaise operated with a hand throttle, wheelchair users can now whiz around the curves for the first time.

Owner: Waltraud & Werner Steinhardt (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Mack Rides GmbH & Co KG  (Waldkirch, Germany)
Chasies: Reverchon, France
Chaises model: Cobra equipped with the Furyo Engine
Year of Construction: 
1974

Dimensions (WxD):  33m x 18 meters / 108.2 x 59 feet
Type:  2-column-autoscooter
Connection:  40 – 90 kW
Capacity:   
Website:  http://www.autoskooter-steinhart.de/

In the historical part, the Oidn Wiesn, there are well-known and proven items such as the Geier nostalgia autoscooter – a wooden post scooter from 1956 – presented by Kurt Geier.  With about 20 vintage bumper cars built between 1960 and 1974, some of which were still made by the Ihle company in Bruchsaal, it has been approved for usage by TÜV Süd and is therefore probably the only wooden bumper car in Bavaria that is still roadworthy. The music is appropriately selected from the time the chaises are from, many hits from the 50s. The 60s and 70s make you indulge in nostalgia while driving. Beautiful wooden benches invite you to watch when one of the family members is on the move, but it is also worth mentioning the wheelchair-accessible ramp that leads up to the ticket booth and from there also makes it easier to change to one of the chaises.

Owner: Kurt Geier  Jr. (München, Germany) 
Manufacturer:  
Chaises:  Ihle (Bruchsaal, Germany) between 1960 – 1974
Chaisen:   vintage chaises from 1963-1979
Year of Construction:  1956
Dimensions (WxD):  16 x 10 meters can be extended, to 20 x 10 meters if required / 52.5 x 32.8 to 65.6 x 32.8 feet
Type:  Wooden post scooter
Connection:  30kW, 80A 
Capacity: 18 original vintage chaises from 1963-1979
Notes:  As a Concession to modern times the oldest of the chaises, are activated with chips: there are no longer cashiers jumping from car to car.
Website:  http://www.nostalgieautoscooter.de/

Kindergeschäfte (Childrens Rides)

This was based on ideas of Max Fahrenschon jr. designed and realized by Samerberger artist Hendrik Müller and built in 1996 by the renowned Dietz company for more than half a million DM.  It is the first Bavarian-style children’s sports carousel with integrated baby flight, ie with independently controllable’ seats’. It is characterized by an original façade design with rally scenes in Bavarian landscapes. The name and design are protected by copyright (Trademark No. 39645154 at the German Patent Office).  Despite the age of the ride, the rally is anything but slow, which is why safety is so important especially the integrated baby flight. Infants under the age of three may be accompanied by an adult in a family-friendly manner – free of charge.

Owner:  Max Fahrenschon (Rosenheim, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz vehicle construction
Painting:  Hendrik Müller Künast
Year of Construction:  1996/7
Dimensions (WxDxH):  13 x 10 x 4.7 meters / 42.7 x 32.8 x 15.4 feet
Type:  Sportkarussell mit Flugcenter
Connection: 35 kW, 63A
Website:  https://www.fahrenschon.com/bayern-rallye

The traditional show jumper carousel Evergreen that dates back to 1910, was found, in ruins, in Vechta, Lower Saxony during the mid-1960’s by the Ernst family. Over the decades, the historic ride was lovingly restored in painstaking detail, largely from original parts. Fully restored, Dieter Ernst and daughter Stephanie (fifth and sixth Ernst family generations) operate the ride. In 1998 the historic carousel was stolen from storage, to be later discovered by a tourist in Croatia. Ernst bought another carousel, a replica, from Italy. With this replica, Ernst attends 8-10 festivals, the original attends five events, Wiesn being one of them.  In addition to the horses, the carousel also contains an elephant and two sledges. The wooden floor construction still hangs on the original turned brass bars. A rarity are the well-preserved oil paintings on canvas for the ceiling and funnel pictures. An organ façade by Wrede from Hanover completes the museum piece.

Owner:  Dieter Ernst GbR (Friedberg, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Barbieri (Italy)
Year of Construction:  Original 1910 ‘seats’. Rebuilt 1995
Dimensions (Dia):  12 meters / 39.3 feet
Type:1-storey floor – jumping horse carousel
Connection:
Capacity:  60 seats
Notes:  All original seats parts have been used in the rebuild. The two vintage cars – Ihle cars – came from the 1960s.

This children’s shop from the manufacturer Fahrzeugbau Dietz is a technical development that offers the smaller passengers a completely new driving experience. This Kinder Traum Schleife (children’s dream loop) is equipped with modern, talking vehicles in a wide variety of models. On a rail length of more than 40m, the driving experience becomes an exciting, thrilling journey with hills and valleys with sharp turns that are the highlights of this type of carousel. The journey is supported by specially developed light and color effects with the latest LED technology that creates a completely new atmosphere which guarantees the children an exciting ride This ride currently meets the highest standard in the children’s sector. In terms of technology, design and presentation, it is currently unsurpassed and unique.

Owner: Alexander & Heinrich Stey (München, Germany)
Manufacturer:  Dietz-Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Germany)
Year of Construction:  1994
Dimensions (WxDxH):   17 x 9 x 7 meters /  55.8 x  29.5 x  23 x feet
Type:  Doppel-8-Schleife (
Double 8 loop)
Connection:  35 kW
Capacity: 
Notes:  

The nostalgic Spring Pferde Karussell at the Oide Wiesn with owner Margot Lechner from München.

Other Entertainment

The Schiffschaukel (boat swing or swing ship) date back to the 1890s, after their popularity in the 1950s, the swings are nowadays struggling to survive. Since 1991 Josef Otto Steininger Jr. operates the last ship swing at the Munich Oktoberfest. With six regular gondolas and two Überschlag (rollover) gondolas his boat swing is still fun for young and old. The family business began with his father Josef Steininger Sr. in 1952 with the purchase of a Schiessbude (shooting booth.) 1954 he acquired his first swing after he lovingly restored, was rewarded with acceptance to the Oktoberfest in 1958.  The swing itself is suspended on a steel construction. The rocking platforms for passengers traditionally are designed to resemble the shape of a ship. Each gondola comfortably accommodates two adults trying to use their muscles to drive the swing. The swing is not so easy to get moving. The rocking boy (Schiffschaukelanschubser) helps to get the ship started.

Those who think that slides are boring have never enjoyed a slide on the legendary Münchner Rutsch’n (Munich Slide) built in 1982 by the German company Huss, and operated by Adolf Stey. The multi-track Münchner Rutsch’n is the second-oldest slide ride at Oktoberfest, after the Toboggan.  First the passengers climb on foot to the top of the 23-meter-high tower using the steps on the left side. Upon reaching the top the passengers get a small square carpet to sit down on before going downhill sliding across the waves of the nine parallel tracks, where children and/or adults can slide side by side, making it fun to race your friends, although the heaviest usually wins. The slide is still a classic at the Oktoberfest, popular with young and old. Due to the size and the typical Bavarian white-and-blue design it should not to be overlooked. Even if the ride just takes a few seconds (each lane is just 55 meters), it’s really great fun.

In the 1880s, shooting clay objects—tobacco pipes, animal figures, small discs either round or star shaped, or clay pots (shards) were the main items used. These were almost exclusively from pottery or clay pipe factories from the Westerwald Kannenbäckerland. The Altbairischer Scherbenschießen shooting gallery still provides clay targets today. Mary Schröder (1899-1975) secretly built a shooting gallery in the last years after the Second World War, and in 1949 with her “Altbairische Scherbenschießen” she attended the first Oktoberfest to take place after the war. The family tradition still continues today with her granddaughter Ursula-Josy Steinker, who took over the Scherbenschießen from her mother Lilo Steinker-Schröder in 1994. Today young shooters are especially cared for; a stand for the heavy shooting-stall rifle is available, an eye patch helps with the aiming and the Tonscheiben, which are still used in this shooting gallery, which are easier to shoot as the more common plastic targets.

The Mouse Circus which that opened in 1979 is actually the second youngest show booth on the Oktoberfest. Originally run by current owner Susanne Bruck-Plexnies’ parents with her mother in the role as Circus Director, a position she occupied unti l 1997 when Susanne assumed the role. Inside, visitors will find a small circus city bustling with a staggering 320 female Albino mice. They sleep in their little carts, work at the cash register, play on seesaws, slides, carousels, or perform tricks on the numerous play equipment. Of course, the small artists are not trained due to the enormous number of artists. Rather, the terrarium is designed so that it awakens the play instinct of the mice and without any encouragement, they perform little tricks on their own. Cleverly placed delicacies are certainly an additional motivation for the mice to ride a carousel, climb on high ropes and ladders, run in turning wheels, or perform air acrobatics on pencil thickness hemp ropes at scary heights of about 1 meter without a safety net, just wrapping their tails around the hemp for some security.

The Schichtl is one of the traditional attractions at Oktoberfest. The Vaudeville theater show has been ever present since it founding in 1869, by Michael August Schichtl. Continuing Schichtl’s tradition, the vaudeville show successors included Johann and Franziska Eichelsdörfer, before 1985, when the current rekommandeur, (barker), Manfred Schauer took over. Schauer, for over 30 years, has entertained the audience with immersive sayings, jokes and word games, along with Schichtl artists including Henker Ringo, the Terrible, Henkersknecht Andi as the Hamperer, the Schichtlin and Spagatamazone Elvira with their traditional butterfly dance. The audience gets to enjoy the half-hour variety show including quirky singing and dancing involving audience participation before the main attraction, the decapitation of a living person on an open, brightly lit stage using the guillotine. The beheading has become one of the oldest, reputable Munich Oktoberfest traditions, and seemingly permanent fixture on the fairgrounds.

High strikers can be traced back to 1820 French folk festivals. From simply banging a fist on a cushion, which measures the force of the blow, to the decorated percussion hammer, such as the Hau den Lukas high strikers, (strength testers, or strongman games) have provided opportunities to impress. The Dicke Berta strength tester—named after the famous First World War, 420-mm M-Gerät howitzer developed by German manufacturer Krupps—works on the principle of the Boer Cannon, from around 1900, which was typically found at folk festivals until the 1960’s. With the Dicke Berta it’s not about swinging a hammer, instead, you have to move, by hand, a 30-kilogram cannon down a track in order to get it moving. If enough strength is used, the cannon races down the track on a sled, gliding upwards as far as it will go. If it hits the top, there is a detonated blast.

The first Hexenschaukel or Witches Swing, a mad house type attraction, by Harris Wheels first appeared in America at the end of the eighteenth century. The oldest ride at the Oktoberfest rotated its drum for the first time at the Oktoberfest in 1894. However, it’s only since 1994, that the Hexenschaukel has been an Oktoberfest regular again, after Ulrich Keller bought and restored the old gem. Ironically, normally Keller is a pastor and his co-workers are mostly theology students. In this amazing illusion the ride confuses the riders senses, making them feel like they are turning upside down while not actually doing so. To create this illusion, the gondola and the whole room can both move in the same or the opposite directions by being rotated from the outside around the swing axis. For many, it has become a ritual to spend the last hour of the last day of Oktoberfest in front of the Hexenschaukel, reminiscing.

Vogt, Gaukler, Trollmann – these fairground names belong to a Münchner family, that has certainly been able to establish a tradition at Oktoberfest, as a permanent resident for over 75 years. Since 1973, Ludwig Trollmann and now his daughter, Jocelyn, have been playing a traditional style Punch and Judy show for his young audience, in the self-made Kasperltheater (puppet theatre). Trollmann usually features ten puppets that have appeared again and again over the years. In fact some of the puppets are 20 years old. The basic elements over time have remained the same except for the crocodile. In the past, the crocodile used to get beaten, which Trollmann can no longer do, in order to avoid getting in trouble with the parents and local associations. Today, the crocodile is brought to the zoo in the end without violence. The times have just changed.

The history of the Oktoberfest is brought to life in the free museum tent of the “Historisches Gesellschaft Bayerischer Schausteller eV”. Exhibits of the “Munich Schausteller Foundation,” whose collection is kept in the Munich City Museum, invite you on a journey through the past of the showman’s guild.  A shooting gallery from 1905 is operational as well as the Münchner Springpferdekarussell (jumping horse carousel) from 1945. Sweets are available in the 1937 Wiener Eispalast (Vienna Ice Palace); Snacks and beer are available from the historic Wurstbraterei (sausage roasting). Exhibits include 65 Years of Oktoberfest Posters, an exhibition dedicated to one of the first female motorcyclists to ride the steep wall in the 1930s Kitty Mathieu, Outside exhibits of functioning fairground organs and the old bulldogs and tractors that was used by the showmen from decades past, as well as an action program for children organized by Lilalu education and vacation programs of the Johanniter-Unfall-Hilfe eV.

Pitt’s Wall of Death was built in 1928 and was purchased in 1932 by “Pitt” Löffelhardt and Ludwig Seeger. Since then, it has stayed with the Munich family (Löffelhardt / Wissinger). The legendary Kitty Matthieu drove the steep wall for many years and together with Pitt Löffelhardt, drove acrobatics in the drum. Almost everything is still in original condition in accordance with their philosophy “Restore yes, modernize no”. The wooden construction, from 1934, is maintained down to the last detail, as well as the bikes; 3 Indian Scout 101’s built in 1928, and 3 BMWs hailing from the 50s & 60s.  In 2004, Jagath Perera, a twenty year veteran, and a native Sri Lanken became team leader and co-owner. During the 15-minute performance he chases through the kettle with various machines, climbs over the handlebars, and drives freehand picking banknotes from the hands of the spectators, who look down in astonishment from above.

The Revue der Illusionen was built by the German manufacturer Wagenbau Köhler in 1984, for first owner Walter Franke. Current owner Gaby Reutlinger obtained the ride in 1994, and has been supported since 2002 by her second husband Erich Römgens.  Revue der Illusionen theatre is probably the last of its kind in Europe. It’s an old-school fair attraction that in addition to gross illusions such as the floating lady, zig-zag box or origami, it shows such nostalgic classics as the legendary ‘Woman without a Body,’ ‘Woman without a Head,’ ‘Levitating Maiden,’ and the ‘Talking Head.’  Recently the Spiker illusion was added, whereby a random member of the audience will be pierced on the open stage in front of everyone with more than 30 metal spikes. Blood flows. This illusion was made possible through the work of an Illusion Builder from Stade and is as real as any of the other performances.

Whether you are watching or riding along – you are laughing well, an advertising sign already praised the visit to the ‘Humorous Velodrome’ at the Oktoberfest in 1910. On a wooden carriageway, a special kind of cycling race takes place: on scooters, which test the driving skills and skills of the cyclist, the same applies. to move to the music of a concert organ and to the audience’s amusement. From 1901 to 1962 this amusement business was regularly at the Oktoberfest. Eduard Pirzer, who had been operating one of the first bicycle factories in Munich since 1888, handed over the Velodrome to Hermann Kretschmar in 1908, whose sons continued until the 1930s. In 1988 the complete shop with façade, tent construction, living and packing wagons as well as the bicycles was acquired by the Münchner Schausteller-Stiftung for the Munich city museum. At the Oidn Wiesn, the Munich Schausteller Foundation has recreated a velodrome based on old patterns.

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