K-Town Fun

It’s Thanksgiving weekend, Christmas market season, and there’s plenty to do in the KMC. Here’s a list of Christmas markets in Rhineland-Pfalz and beyond. On Sunday, there is a Soul Brunch at Hop In bar in Kaiserslautern’s Altstadt. There will be African food served, soul and R&B music, cocktails and a “celebration vibe.” More info and tickets here. The culture market in the Fruchthalle in downtown Kaiserslautern opens Friday with arts and crafts for sale, two cafes and music. It’s open daily until Dec. 18 from 12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and from 10:00 a.m. on Saturdays.
From left, Stephanie Hsu, Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan in "Everything Everywhere All At Once." (Allyson Riggs/A24/TNS)
The Atlantic Academy’s series “America on Screen” continues in Kaiserslautern. The German-American partnership organization is offering a free English screening of the comedy-drama “Everything Everywhere All At Once” on Sunday at 6 p.m. in downtown’s Union theatre. The 2022 movie follows Chinese-American laundromat operator Evelyn Wang, who discovers that she must connect with different versions of herself to prevent the destruction of the multiverse. The event opens with a German-language introduction to the history of Asian migration and anti-Asian racism in the U.S. Free tickets are available at Union theatre.
The USAFE Band will hold a Christmas concert in downtown Kaiserslautern. The airmen musicians will be joined by the Rheinland-Pfalz International Choir at Fruchthalle Dec. 2 at 8 p.m. Free tickets for the performance are available on a first come, first served basis starting Wednesday at 4 p.m., at the German-American Community Office, in Lauterstrasse 2. 
A metal structure built on top of reconstructed ruins of Emperor Frederick I’s Imperial Palace is meant to give visitors an idea of how large the original building was.
For anyone curious about Kaiserslautern’s history and former grandeur, the city offers underground tours that take visitors through subterranean passages and through the grounds of what used to be the imperial palace, thought to be one of the most magnificent buildings of its kind in the Holy Roman Empire. Tour participants are unlikely to see contemporary Kaiserslautern the same way again. Public tours in English are held on irregular Saturdays. Read more here.
Several Christmas markets open this weekend, there’s a roundup here. More than 75 artisans will present their handmade goods and Christmas decorations at a pre-Christmas arts and crafts fair at Congress Center Ramstein on Saturday and Sunday. Australian comedians Dave Adams and Chris Darwa take the stage at the Kazabra Club on Vogelweh tonight, with a special guest spot from active-duty comedian Roberto Mandes. On Saturday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers cheerleaders take part in a free meet-and-greet at the Kazabra. For more local events, check this out.
Kaiserslautern Christmas market is opening next week. The market opens at 6 p.m. Monday with funk, soul, jazz and gospel music on Schillerplatz. Opening week includes Christmas-themed concerts, a children’s Christmas bakery event from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. on Nov. 26 and Sunday shopping Nov. 27. All downtown advent season events are listed in the online program flyer.
Kaiserslautern’s first Beer and BBQ Festival comes to Fritz Walter Stadium. From Nov. 25-27, visitors can sample more than 200 different types of beer and 30 whiskey varieties, paired with an international selection of grilled meat dishes. Cornhole games, hot-wing eating contests and electronic bull riding promise fun for the whole family. On all three event days, live bands offer rock, blues and soul music. Tickets and info can be found online.
Iced ginger Christmas cookies await customers at the Christmas Market in Kaiserslautern, Germany, on Monday Nov. 27, 2017. Police announced security measures would be tight during the event in Kaiserslautern and those held throughout Germany.
We’re inching toward Christmas market season. A few in Germany are open this weekend, including the one in Ludwigshafen, about 45 minutes from the KMC, which kicked off earlier this week. Check out this roundup of markets.
Veterans Day, St. Martin’s Day and a turkey trot: These are some of the events happening in the KMC this weekend. On Friday, the public can attend Veterans Day ceremonies at American military cemeteries in Europe. Also on Friday, Germany celebrates St. Martin’s Day with lantern parades and community bonfires. Families in Kaiserslautern can join the procession through downtown starting at 5:30 p.m. on Martinsplatz. Events start in Ramstein at the Catholic church at 5:30 p.m. Parents and children carrying lanterns can follow St. Martin through the streets of Ramstein. The Ramstein Fitness Center is holding a free virtual 5K Turkey Trot run through Nov. 18. Log your miles this weekend and then verify them with fitness staff.
MWR is holding a Non-Appropriated Funds (NAF) Warehouse Sale on Friday, Nov. 18, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Special Events Center, Bldg. 237, on Rhine Ordnance Barracks. Items on sale include used office furniture, decorations, gym and recreational equipment and more. DOD cardholders only. Credit and debit cards are accepted. 
Following Saturday night’s 3-2 win in Bielefeld, 1. FC Kaiserslautern plays its final home game of the year against Karlsruhe SC at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday. There is no love lost between FCK and KSC soccer fans, with violence between the teams’ supporters in recent years, so officials have classified it a “high risk” game. That means fans will be kept separated from each other as much as possible near and in Fritz Walter Stadium. No alcoholic beverages will be sold there, or in streets leading to it, including the main train station area. Game tickets are still available, but police say to still expect heavy traffic in and around town and that fans should use the park-and-ride possibilities at the Kaiserslautern-Ost autobahn exit and at the Technical University. Because it is a workday more passengers can be expected to be riding the trains as well, so police recommend that spectators allow enough time to arrive for the kickoff. The Red Devils play their last game before the World Cup break at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 11 in Duesseldorf. FCK’s next home game is Feb. 4, 2023, against Kiel.
Friday is not only Veterans Day. Much of Europe traditionally celebrates St. Martin of Tours on Nov. 11. In the allegorical tale, the Roman soldier is said to have used his sword to cut his cloak in two to give half to a freezing beggar. In Germany, children celebrate by crafting lanterns and communities hold bonfires. Families in Kaiserslautern can join the big procession through the downtown starting 5:30 p.m. on Martinsplatz. The procession ends with a play of the Martin’s tale and bonfire at town hall. The municipal forestry department is also inviting families for a St. Martin’s celebration at the wildlife park Friday. Meeting point is the the Kniebrech parking lot, near Kneippverein, at 5 p.m. Together, the group will walk through the forest to the wildlife park singing traditional songs. The St. Martin’s bonfire concludes with hot drinks and refreshments. Flashlights are recommended for the way home through the forest.
The latest Marvel release, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” opens Friday at the Exchange Reel Time Theater at the Kaiserslautern Military Community Center. The Exchange has a special offer for moviegoers attending the show: For every ticket purchase, attendees get a free kid’s movie ticket for a later date and a free small popcorn. Plus, they’ll get a chance to win a $100 Subway gift card in a raffle. Show times for the PG-13 flick are: 11 a.m., 1:45 p.m., 2:15 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. The 3D version shows at 2 p.m. and 5:15 p.m. Tickets can be purchased when the box office opens at 10:30 a.m. Friday. The movie will also be showing throughout the week after the Veterans Day opening.
The Fall Bazaar hosted by the United States Army Garrison Ansbach Morale, Welfare and Recreation in 2019 featured Goufrais chocolate.
Early holiday shopping is part of the fun this weekend in the KMC. The Holiday Bazaar will offer home decor, pottery and other gifts at the Special Events Center on Rhine Ordnance Barracks from Friday through Sunday. The November installment of the Homemade Food and Craft Market is on Saturday and Sunday at the Ramstein Community Center. The Pirmasens November Market includes a wine tent, a Ferris wheel, live music, food and more Friday through Sunday. (Stores will be open for Sunday shopping.) Works by about 30 German artists will be sold at the Weilerbach Arts and Crafts Market on Saturday and Sunday. If you’re not in the mood for shopping, head for KMC Onstage’s production of the thriller Wait Until Dark from Friday through Sunday at the KCAC on Daenner Kaserne,  catch the USAFE-Ambassadors Rock Band at the Kaiserslautern Fruchthalle Sunday, or check out more fun options here.
A fake spiderweb stretches across a garden on Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Oct. 16, 2020. Many houses on base are already decked out for Halloween but there will be no trick-or-treaters this year after the Air Force announced that trick-or-treating at family housing on base is prohibited due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Trick-or-treating at Vogelweh, Ramstein and Landstuhl housing runs from 6 to 9 p.m. tonight, according to the KMC Housing Office.
Craving curry? Kaiserslautern’s Curry House is a favorite among local Indian restaurants. Favorite dishes include the tandoori lamb, the palak paneer and the lamb dhansak, which features chunks of meat in a lentil curry with cumin and ginger accents. The restaurant is located downtown by the Kaiserbrunnen and is open today and Sunday. Read more here.
Halloween comes to Kaiserslautern Zoo on Monday. The grounds will be haunted by ghosts, witches and monsters from 5 to 8:30 p.m. on Halloween. A spooky course through the zoo and a “horror rally” await brave visitors who can win a free meal and drinks at the zoo restaurant! More info online.
Fans dressed in FC Kaiserslautern apparel cheer on the soccer team during a game at Fritz Walter Stadium. Phillip Walter Wellman/Stars and Stripes
It is a meeting of former German soccer champions when 1. FC Kaiserslautern takes on 1. FC Nuremberg at 1 p.m. on Saturday at the Fritz Walter Stadium. Although both teams now play in Germany’s second division, they have 13 first division titles (FCN nine, FCK four) between them, with the last won by the Red Devils in 1998. The game is nearly sold out, so police say to expect heavy traffic in town and that fans should use the park-and-ride possibilities at the Kaiserslautern-Ost autobahn exit and at the Technical University. Kaiserslautern is coming off a 2-0 away win in Rostock last weekend, while Nuremberg played Hannover to a 0-0 tie.
Wait Until Dark runs Oct. 28-Nov. 6 at KMC Onstage.
Halloween fun abounds this weekend in the KMC. Both of the local American theaters have spine-tingling productions planned, with a shadowcast of The Rocky Horror Picture Show at Ramstein Community Center Friday and Saturday. The thriller Wait Until Dark is being presented at the KCAC on Daenner Kaserne Friday through Nov. 6. Club E at Ramstein Air Base is presenting SCARYoke: A Halloween Karaoke Night on Saturday. Armstrong Club on the housing side of Vogelweh is hosting the Spooktacular Halloween Bash with a costume contest on Saturday. If you’re wanting something that’s not Halloween-themed, you could try the Zellertal Open Friday tasting with selections from several wineries and shuttle buses through the valley. Check out more weekend options here.
Das Kerwegelände bei Nacht. 
Foto: Stadt Kaiserslautern
Looking to start the week with a blast? Kaiserlautern’s October Kerwe fair is scheduled to conclude with “Thank you” fireworks visible from the Messeplatz fairgrounds tonight at 9 p.m.
The KMCC Exchange offers an afternoon of spooky holiday fun Oct. 29.  Score sweet treats from your favorite vendors during mall trick or treating starting at 4 p.m. Show off your halloween spirit during the mall costume parade at 6 p.m., followed with a costume contest and chance to win $25 Exchange Gift Cards at 6:30 p.m. (sign-up starts at 4 p.m.).
A sign near the ''wine education trail'' in Maikammer, Germany, informs passersby that there is a wine vending machine just steps away at Winzerhof Ernst winery. The machine sells reds, whites and roses, grape juice, water and glasses to drink purchases from.

Karin Zeitvogel/Stars and Stripes
A  “Weinlehrpfad” is a trail through a vineyard featuring signs that let you walk and learn. Check out this list of spots to try. Several of the options, including those in the Pfalz region, are about an hour from the KMC.
Check out Elvis and Mozart as the Kaiserslautern Gartenschau wraps up its “World of Music” pumpkin exhibit next week. Thirteen figures made of the autumn gourds represent various facets of music, and can be seen until Oct. 31. Almost 40,000 pumpkins are spread out over the Gartenschau grounds — always worth a visit — for the perfect autumn feeling.
It’s shaping up to be a Halloween-themed weekend in Kaiserslautern. At the Kazabra Club on Vogelweh, there’s a Community Expo and trick or treat event Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Then later Friday, the Kazabra Club hosts an Oktoberfest Comedy Show with three of Germany’s top comics performing in English. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; show starts at 8 p.m. Also on Friday, families can visit the Ramstein Community Center for games, costume photo-ops, and a spooky walk down a haunted hallway from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. (reservations are required). This is also the last weekend of the Lautrer Oktober Kerwe, Kaiserslautern’s carnival at the Messeplatz.
Carved pumpkins decorating Halloween Holiday.
Two hundred pumpkins will fill Kaiserslautern’s city center on Oct. 29 for an all-day Halloween program for kids. The spooky festivities go from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in front of the Collegiate Church. Costumes are encouraged. Prizes will be awarded to the most original costume. Other activities include making masks and carving pumpkins, with small prizes for the best creations up for grabs. Children may take their pumpkins and handicrafts home. The event is free of charge and no reservations are needed. For more information, go to:
Get a sneak peek of the upcoming world premiere of The Red Thread dance show at the Pfalztheater in Kaiserslautern on Oct. 26 at 5 p.m. Acclaimed New York City choreographer and dancer Bryan Arias will host a talk about his career and answer questions before taking the audience backstage to attend an exclusive open rehearsal of The Red Thread, being produced by his partner, Alba Castillo. The event is in English and admission is free. The evening is part of the Atlantic Academy’s new event series, Sounds of America, which dives into the world of American music and dance. The Red Thread premieres Oct. 29. For more information,  go to:
At Kaiserslautern’s main cemetery, Americans can learn more about the German city where they live. The Hauptfriedhof, near the U.S. Army’s Daenner Kaserne and Kleber Kaserne, is a parklike space perfect for a meditative Sunday stroll. Visit the Kindergraves section, which marks the graves of infants born to American military families stationed in the KMC in the 1950s and ’60s. Read more here.

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