Volksmarch column for March 17
The days are slowly getting longer and so is the weekly list of volksmarches. We hope you are enjoying the milder weather, even though it seems to have meant more rain. Sunday, March 27, we switch our clocks forward one hour. We will get the hour back on Oct. 30.
• For a walk through history, head to Flamierge, Belgium, on Sunday for the “Dead Man’s Ridge Walk.” This walk is in honor of the men of the 17th Airborne Division. Like the Bastogne Historical Walk and the 82nd Airborne Walk, it does not include IVV credit. It does, however, give you an opportunity to see numerous re-enactors and walk the terrain where elements of the 17th Airborne Division fought during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II.
Registration for the walk starts at 8 a.m. There will be a ceremony at the monument to the 17th Airborne Division at 9:30 a.m. The walk will start at about 9:45 a.m. Routes will be six and 16 kilometers. The registration fee includes a certificate and a drink at a rest stop. Organizers recommend that you bring a sack lunch.
• For those heading to the walk in Baone, Italy, Clark Soeldner tells us that you can choose between a hat, a bottle of wine or some olive oil for your prize.
• One of our eagle-eyed editors told us about an advertisement for an upcoming “culinary volksmarch” April 17. Ever curious, Bob decided to investigate. It turns out that this is not a volksmarch as we usually think of it. There is no mention of the IVV or the issuing of IVV credit.
This event does, however, have a five- or 10-kilometer route with about 10 catering stands where you can try different foods and drinks from the local Rheinhessen region. The flier we found does not give a specific town for the walk, but Stripes staff has since found out it is in Oppenheim. It is described as stroller-friendly and child-friendly. For more information and to sign up, go to www.RTTtravel.com.
• We are still buzzing about our recent trip to the walled city of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany. We had a very good time there, and so did the Heidelberg International Wandering Club. Its newsletter for March 2011 has an excellent after-action report by Lori Culbert. Included are several pictures including the three flags of the three big American walking clubs next to one another. To see this newsletter, visit www.hiwc.de/newsletters/webnews-hiwc2011mar.pdf.
• The HIWC has another bus trip coming April 16. The club will be going to Orscholz, Germany, for a walk, followed by a trip to Mettlach to visit the factory outlet shops. Combining a volksmarch with a trip to a factory outlet center is always a good bet. If we were not going to Venice this weekend, we would definitely be heading to Orscholz and Mettlach.
To sign up, or for info, contact trip captain Frank Dunfrund at email@example.com.
• We recently enjoyed the walk in Diepenbeek, Belgium. The weather was sunny and cold, but not windy. And the walk had flat trails! We did the seven-kilometer route in about 1½ hours because there were a couple of scenic things to see. The trail took us over the Albert Canal — we stopped going out and coming back to watch ships and barges in the locks and the water rise and fall so that they could continue along the canal. Nearby, there was a lake with all kinds of waterfowl — and a big sign with pictures of all the different birds and ducks to see there. It appeared to be a nature center, and a wooden platform/nature stand was set up for people to go up (a few steps), and look through “windows” cut out of the wood. The trail often paralleled creeks/streams, and there were a few small bridges to cross over the streams. In all of our walks in Belgium, this was the first time we walked along the Albert Canal. We look forward to returning to Diepenbeek, perhaps in the fall, to see more of the area.
• “Danke” goes out to the following people for sending us fliers: William Castro and Maureen McHugh-Castro; Cath and Rob Floyd; Richard and Donna Glenn; John, Mary and Tess Laub; Tim and Luchi Lynch; “Pat” and Cheryl Patterson; Rick and Wanda Sciascia; Bob Gambert; and Wayne Henry.