Click here for this week’s European Volksmarch schedule.
The hot walk this weekend is in Boppard, Germany, a beautiful city beside the Rhine River.
It is a well-organized walk and swim event that coincides with the town’s annual wine festival. Our walking club has attended this event each of the past three years.
The start is at the city swimming pool, which is about half way up, or down, the side of the valley. Last year, the 10-kilometer walk provided us with beautiful views of the Rhine from up high, and then took us down along the river side. Two years ago it seemed like the 10k route was eight kilometers uphill, and only two kilometers down.
The town has several interesting sights, including the remains of a Roman military camp, the St. Severus church, which was built in the 12th and 13th centuries, and the medieval market square, built on the site of Roman baths.
There are numerous riverside restaurants, and on Saturday night there will be a fireworks display. Food and wine booths abound and live music and bands are everywhere. If you like sweet, white wines, try the Federweissen.
On Saturday, start the 5- and 10-kilometer walks between 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. and the 20k route between 7:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. On Sunday, all routes start between 7:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. A B-medal, in limited quantities, is the prize for the walks and a certificate is the souvenir for the swims.
Tuesday is German Unity Day, the 16th anniversary of German unification — the day when East Germany and West Germany became one again. It’s also the day the German Volksmarching community typically sets aside to help combat a deadly disease.
Cystic fibrosis, known as mucoviscidosis in German, is the most common cause of chronic lung disease in children and young adults. Cystic fibrosis is an inherited disease that affects the respiratory and digestive systems. Symptoms include whooping cough, asthma or bronchitis.
Several walking clubs will participate Tuesday in “Deutschland wandert — Deutschland hilft” (“Germany walks — Germany helps”). A portion of the proceeds from each event will be donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation; the money will go to aid the children and their families.
The three-day march in Fulda, Germany, provides walkers several trail options, but look closely at the listing for the exact start days and times. Between 4 and 5 p.m. Friday, you can start walks of either 6 or 11 kilometers. Then, you can attend the pasta party buffet between 5 and 8 p.m. for an additional 5 euros.
On Saturday and Sunday, the club offers 6-, 10-, 25- and 42-kilometer distances, but you can also choose to participate in the special International Marching League two-day march and walk, either a 25k path or a 42k course each day. Saturday there is a schnitzel buffet between 5 and 7 p.m. for only 6 euros.
Those who participate in the IML two-day march will receive a medal and certificate. IVV walkers can also pay for a medal and/or certificate to commemorate participation, and IVV marathoners can get a patch and certificate for the 42k. If you want to walk Saturday’s long-distance trail, you must catch a bus at the Sportzentrum between 7 and 7:30 a.m. and it will take you to the start on the Rhön Mountains (begin between 7:30-8 a.m.); the bus will cost you 5 euros. Sunday’s marathon begins in the start hall with the rest of the walking trails.
The Fulda events begin at the Deutsch- Amerikanisches Sportzentrum on B254 in the direction of Haimbach.
Our unending gratitude goes out to this week’s contributors. They are: Tom, Petra and Maya Casarez; Manfred Dahl; Theresia Fontaine; Bob Gambert; Lew Harrison; Wayne Henry; Jan and John Jensen; Ramona and Horst Kechelen; David Kuik; John and Renee Kulick; Tim and Luchi Lynch; John and Patty Marsh; Phillip and Janice Schneider; Nancy Shawley; and Ed Whitworth.
If you have sent us fliers over the past few weeks and have not noticed your name in the “Thanks” section, it is because this article is still coming from the Philadelphia suburbs. When we get back and sort the mail, we will immediately recognize the contributors.
Miscellaneous short notes about this week’s Volksmarch events:
• The prize for completing the walk at Filderstadt-Harthausen is a snow-covered church windlight. There are several differences between these winter-themed buildings and we have been known to drive several hours to obtain one. We enjoy lighting them up on a cold winter evening. They also make unique Christmas gifts.
Clark Soeldner, our Italian Volksmarching connection, says the Zanè event is a great walk that draws big crowds. There will be plenty of food at the fest, starting at 10:30 a.m.
• The Albignasego walk also draws a big crowd. The best way to get there is to exit the A4 at Padova Est and take the Tangenziale south, watching for the blue sign for Albignasego.
• The walk in Selz di Ronchi dei Legionari has an added attraction. By special arrangement, you can visit the Vergine Caves in conjunction with the walk.
• The walk at San Paolo di Morsano al Tagliamento includes a boat ride across the Tagliamento River. You might want to take an extra pair of pants, because — unless you are in the first boatload — you’ll probably end up on a wet seat!
Please e-mail volksmarch schedule information for any country to firstname.lastname@example.org. By conventional mail, send brochures (in date order if possible) to: Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO, AE, 09703-0278.