Norm Raynal, our walking friend who is raising money for the Landstuhl Fisher Houses by walking seven marathons in five countries this summer, was forced to cancel his walk in Luxembourg. In its place, he has added a marathon in Melderslo, Netherlands, this Sunday.

To find out more about Norm and his noble cause, visit A pledge would be appreciated not only by Norm, but also by the people staying in Landstuhl at the Fisher Houses.


This weekend, members of the Wanderfreunde Crailsheim e.V., hold their 42st Internationale Wandertage and 28th marathon. Only 30 minutes from Rothenburg ob der Tauber, one of Germany’s most popular tourist attractions, the 6-kilometer, 12- and 20-kilometer walks are on Saturday between 5:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. and again on Sunday, 5:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. A Jugendwanderung, part of the DVV-Junior-Series, will also be held daily. The 42k marathon starts both days between 5:30 and 9 a.m. The Europa Marathon patch, with the flags of the IVV countries blended into the design, will be awarded along with a certificate.

As former columnist Jennifer West has told us in the past, “The club members are friendly, the trails are well organized and marked and there is plenty of parking available. And if you’re in need of gas, an ESSO station (and McDonald’s, too) is right off A6 on the edge of town toward Rothenburg and A7. Speaking of Rothenburg: If you start and finish your Crailsheim walk early in the morning, consider spending your afternoon visiting the walled city. Since you’re already in the area, take advantage of your proximity to this picturesque and famous German town.”


It’s only three weeks until one of our favorite walks. In fact, it’s one of our top two walks in Germany. We are referring to the Heidelberg International Wandering Club’s annual walk in Heidelberg. Instead of writing a list of things to do over the weekend of Sept. 9-10, and then seeing if there is any time left for a Volksmarch, make this walk the No. 1 item on the list and then tackle the other things afterward. Heidelberg is a beautiful city, the trails are well marked and organized, the food at the start hall is always very good, there will be live music for your enjoyment and the mug given as the prize is always beautiful. What more can you ask for in a Volksmarch?


Miscellaneous short notes about this week's Volksmarch events:

• The walk in Bellevaux, Belgium, is close to two of my favorite Battle of the Bulge museums, in La Gleize, and Poteau. If you are in the area, try to visit at least one of these two excellent museums.

• If you attend the walks in Switzerland, don’t forget to get your toll sticker before you enter the country.

• Take note that the Radwanderung (bike event) in Steinberg, Germany, is a Saturday-only event, while the Volksmarch is a Sunday-only event. Bike 25 or 50 kilometers, starting between 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and finishing by 7 p.m. Sunday; hit the 5-, 10- or 20-kilometer trails between 6 a.m. and noon and finish by 4 p.m.

• In Mainz-Gonsenheim, Germany, the start times for each day are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the 5k, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. for the 10k, and 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the 20k. The Volksmarch starts in the Karl-Geib-Haus on Kapellenstr. 44 in Mainz-Gonsenheim and is adjacent to a wild animal park. The start is small but quaint and lies in an extremely popular walking area. If the weather is hot, sunny and dry, you should arrive early because parking will be at a premium. A coffee mug is the prize.

• The start hall for the Wattendorf walk is not mentioned in the flyer. We recommend that you look for signs that will guide you once you get in the town of Wattendorf.

• Wednesday’s march in Nieder-Wiesen, Germany, offers walkers an opportunity to start the 6- and 10-kilometer events until 6 p.m.; great for those who want to walk after work. If you get off work a little earlier or happen to have the day off, walk the 20k, which begins 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. A troll with a rain meter is the souvenir.

• Clark Soeldner’s comments on the Italian Volksmarching scene:

The Saturday evening walk in Jegher di Rovere Veronese will be limited to 200 walkers. The cost is 10 euros but includes a supper for the participants. The Sunday morning walk includes some beautiful views from the mountains. The food given as a prize at the walk in Villanova di Pordenone is usually cheese. This is a flat walk in conjunction with a fest, so plenty of food will be available after the walk.

Please e-mail volksmarch schedule information for any country to two.walkers@ Please mail brochures, in date order if possible, to: Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO, AE, 09703-0278.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now