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Click here for this week’s European Volksmarch schedule.

It’s that time of year again: time to talk turkey. Specifically, we’re talking about the Nov. 23 Ramstein Roadrunners’ Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. Let’s take a brief look today and fill in more details next week.

As usual, the event begins in the village of Ramstein, Germany, at the intersection of Jahnstrasse and Landstuhler Strasse. The easiest way to reach the TV 03 Turnhalle is to hop on the road connecting Landstuhl and Ramstein, head toward Ramstein and you’ll see the Turnhalle on the left, less than a half-mile from the little traffic circle near the Shell gas station.

The 5- and 10-kilometer trails start between 7:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.; the finish time is 3 p.m. Please finish by then so club members can clean up the hall and then enjoy their Thanksgiving meals.

This year’s souvenir is a 10-inch-tall Nutcracker, and it will be go quickly. Arrive early enough to make sure you get one.

For more information on the Turkey Trot, visit the club’s Web site: www.ava.org/clubs/ramsteinroadrunners/home.htm.

The Roadrunners could use volunteers to help make this a successful holiday walk. Whether it is setting up, marking trails, staffing a control point or cleaning up afterward, there is a job to fit your interests and abilities. Contact Regina at Ramsteinroadrunners@yahoo.com if you can volunteer.

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This week we have five Fackelwanderungs, or torch walks, in Germany to select from.

¶ The Wanderfreunde Roßwangen will sell torches for 1 euro each at the Balingen-Weilstetten walk. Saturday’s daytime walk starts between 1 and 4 p.m., while its torch walk is 4-6 p.m. Wrap up the 5- or 10-kilometer courses that evening by 8. B-medals are the prize.

¶ For those of you near Stuttgart, there will be a torch walk Saturday at Kernen- Rommelshausen. Start between 2 and 6 p.m. and finish by 9. Sunday there will be regular routes of 6, 11 and 20 kilometers starting between 7 a.m. and 1 p.m. There is no prize for these walks, only IVV credit.

¶ If the Saarland is closer to you, try the torch walk in Sitterswald. It is also Saturday evening, starting between 4 and 7 p.m., and finishing by 9. The walks are 5k or 10k and are for IVV credit only.

¶ The Rhaunen torch walk starts between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. on Saturday and is 6 kilometers.

¶ The flier for the walk in Elgersweier advertises it as a torch walk starting between 2 and 6 p.m. Saturday. However, the DVV Web site does not list it as a torch walk. If you are in the area, you might want to check it out for the unusual prize. The flier shows a small wooden house for holding Schnapps, but before you get too excited, it clearly says the Schnapps is not included.

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In 2001, the club in Vorbachzimmern, Germany, offered a decorative church candle holder as its souvenir. In 2002, the members offered a Pfarrhaus, or rectory, candle holder. In 2003, it was a town hall; in 2004, a guest house; and last year, a schoolhouse. This year, the club is offering a train station candle house.

Why do I mention the past years’ prizes? Because if you’re interested in collecting these candle houses (place a tea light candle in them and watch them glow), you might still be able to get one or two since B-medals are available in limited quantities.

In 2001, we were so excited about getting the church that we didn’t pay attention to how far away the walk was. We ended up driving several hours each way! But we got the church and love collecting these buildings. And, yes, we have given some as Christmas gifts.

Start times for the five-, 10- and 20-kilometer trails are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday; the finish time for both days is 6 p.m. So, unless you can walk 20 kilometers in two hours, don’t wait until 4 p.m. on Saturday to start the long course.

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Miscellaneous notes about this week’s volksmarch events:

¶ Sunday’s walk in Bettendorf, Luxembourg, is convenient for the folks in the Bitburg and Spangdahlem, Germany, areas. Not only is the countryside beautiful, but it also is close to my (Bob’s) favorite Battle of the Bulge museum, in Diekirch, Luxembourg. I know where we’re going to be on Sunday.

¶ Here’s a unique walk: the “Horizont Wanderweg” in Karlsruhe, Germany. Starting Thursday and continuing through Sunday, this 10- and 20-kilometer event is only for visitors of the Messe Horizont. The 10k trail starts between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. and the 20k between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Messe Karlsruhe, Haupteingang (main entrance). Finish by 6 p.m. There is no award for this volksmarch or the Nordic walk and, by the way, it looks as if there is a nominal fee to get into the Messe Horizont. Take the Karlsruhe Süd exit from the autobahn and follow the “Messe/dm-arena” signs.

¶ What is probably the last biking event of the year takes place this weekend in Hattenhof, Germany. Ride the 25k on Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and finish by 7 p.m., or on Sunday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., and finish by 5 p.m. If you want to walk, too, there are 5- and 10-kilometer trails both days that have the same start window as the biking event. A model beer truck with a trailer is the prize.

¶ A 10-inch-tall porcelain angel candle-holder is the souvenir at St. Peter, Germany. The walk begins Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and has a 5 p.m. finish.

¶ The Mehrzweckhalle at the Bahnhof is the start for the 6k, 11k and 20k trails in Monreal, Germany. The start window is 7:30 a.m. to noon; finish by 4 p.m. B-medals in limited quantities are the prize.

¶ There will be new 5k and 10k routes this year for the walk in Winterbach/Saar.

¶ According to Clark Soeldner, our Italian volksmarching connection, if you want to attend the walk at Anguillara Veneta, exit the A-13 at Boara, take the SS-16 south for 1.5 kilometers and then east for 9 kilometers.

The Badia Polesine prize is 250 grams of nodini ia funghi porcini (porcini mushrooms) and 250 grams Nodini d’Amore pasta. He writes: “I did this walk in 2002 and wondered what the ‘Nodini d’Amore’ pasta looked like. It turned out to be like tiny sacks closed with a cord at the top.” The cost for the restoros and two packages of pasta is 2.90 euros — not a bad deal.

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


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