04 September 2009

Summer Vacation

For the first time in eight months I'm on home soil in America. I'll be staying here for most of the month enjoying time with friends and family. As Fire at Will is mostly meant as a means of sharing my European travels and experiences, I do not forsee any new posts until my return to Germany. New trips are already planned for the weeks after my return, and soon after that the next semester will begin. Check back sometime in the middle or towards the end of October, and in the meantime take advantage of the summer's twilight.

Eichstätt's Volksfest

A couple weeks ago I wrote about the famous Volksfest of Straubing, now its Eichstätt's turn. The festival here is of course not nearly as large or as famous as Straubing's, but it offers it's own charm.

The festivities began last Friday evening, but the festival itself did not officially kick off until Saturday afternoon. This is when a short parade carrying Eichstätt's mayor and this year's chosen "queen" for the festival left the town center and arrived at the fair grounds. Before the parade started, hundreds of people gathered on the Marktplatz, the main town square, to enjoy free beer distributed from the local Hofmühl brewery.

Some photos showing the staging of the parade follow.

The fairly small and quaint Volksfest Eichstätt offers one massive beer tent, seemingly large enough to contain all residents of the town, a couple dozen vendors and amusement rides. A view inside the beer tent, which I believe was acutally larger than any of the tents I visited in Straubing, is in the first picture below. The blue and white banners correspond with the offical colors of Bavaria. At the end of the tent, or what looks like the distant horizon, is a stage where different bands will play during the entire length of the festival. The last picture offers a glimpse of the festival from the top of the ferris wheel. Eichstätt's Volksfest will continue until next Sunday, but of course by then I'll have been gone from Germany for a handful of days.