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This is a long holiday weekend across Europe and there are plenty of Volksmarches to choose from. The walks are starting earlier too, so you early birds can get up and get your Volksmarches out of the way first thing in the morning.

• Saturday is Queen’s Day in the Netherlands, and Friday will be a Dutch holiday. Saturday, the town of Landgraaf will host its annual “Queen’s Walk.” It’s a very popular event, and we have enjoyed this walk on several occasions. The route usually takes you across the border into Germany and past Schloss Rimburg. It is very convenient for walkers in the Schinnen, Brunssum and Geilenkirchen areas.

Then we might head to Kanne, Belgium, just outside Maastricht, Netherlands. It’s close to the Belgian fortress at Eben-Emael. We always like walking in that area.

• Hohenfels has a lot of activities planned this weekend associated with the German-American Volksfest. The opening ceremony was last night, but there are still plenty of festivities to enjoy, and one of the weekend’s events is a volksmarch. The start times for the walk are 8 a.m. until noon Saturday and 7 a.m. until noon Sunday. The walk starts at the Kulturzentrum on Dekan-Schnitter-Strasse. This year’s prize is a ceramic Madonna statue with small roses around the bottom.

This sounds like a lot of fun and a great way to experience German culture. A volksmarch combined with a Volksfest — can it get any better?

• Look for the Stuttgart German-American Wandering Club’s blue flag at Oberstenfeld, Germany, this weekend. This event is a “Stammtisch” walk. Start time is between 6 a.m. and 1 p.m. both days. The prize for this walk is a thermos-like mug.

• Don’t forget Saturday’s Kiddie Volksmarch at Patrick Henry Village. If you have volunteered to help, we thank you in advance. If you have some time and want to help, I’m sure Rob Floyd will keep you busy. Contact him at hiwc@yahoo.com.

• Clark Soeldner reminds us that the prize of a bag of food at the Buttrio, Italy, walk is only for those who pre-registered.

• Next Sunday is Mother’s Day. If you haven’t got something planned yet, why not take Mom on a Volksmarch? The Ramstein Roadrunners will host their big spring walk next Saturday and Sunday. The start is at the Mehrzweckhalle in Miesenbach; the street address for the GPS is Am Kiefernkopf 20. This year they’ve added a new 15-kilometer route to the usual 5-, 10- and 20- kilometer routes. The prize is a glass with the Roadrunners’ logo engraved on it.

If you can’t stay for the walk, you can help by dropping off a donation of just about any kind of baked goods. Volksmarchers work up a good appetite, and a brownie or piece of cake is always in demand. If you can volunteer or make a donation, contact Brad at ramsteinroadrunners@yahoo.com.

• Even though there is no Volksmarch in the area, we will be doing a lot of walking at the Ciney, Belgium, military show Sunday. There are some towns that have smaller military flea markets every month. This one is so large, they only have it twice a year. There will be more than 500 vendors and 4 kilometers of tables showing every kind of military equipment imaginable.

No matter what era of military history grabs your interest, there will be something there for you. Bob usually manages to find at least one interesting item to buy. Hmm… Spa, Belgium, is 70-some kilometers away and sort of on the way home. Maybe we can stop there, too!

• In the walk chart this week, Langenaubach, and Konz-Krettnach, Germany, are missing its distances. The distances for Langenaubach are 6-, 11-, 16- and 22 kilometers. The distances for Konz-Krettnach are 5, 10 and 20 kilometers.

• Thanks to these regulars for the brochures we consulted for this week’s column: William Castro and Maureen McHugh-Castro, Cath and Rob Floyd, Bob Gambert, Richard and Donna Glenn, Wayne Henry, Tim and Luchi Lynch, “Pat” and Cheryl Patterson, and Rick and Wanda Sciascia.

E-mail volksmarch information to two.walkers@yahoo.com. Mail brochures to Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO, AE, 09752.

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