Volksmarch column for the November 26, 2009 edition
Stars and Stripes November 26, 2009
Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!
Thursday is the Ramstein Roadrunner’s Annual Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. We hope that when you read this, you have already completed the walk and are resting in preparation for a big Thanksgiving feast.
If, on the other hand, you have not been to the walk yet, you have until 1 p.m. to get there and start the six- or 11-kilometer routes. If you have time, take a couple of minutes to pick up some baked goods to donate to the club. Make sure you finish your walk by 3 p.m. so club members and other volunteers can quickly clean the hall and get home to their Thanksgiving meals.
When you are finished, don’t forget to pick up your prize. Hopefully you arrived in time to get one of the beer mugs with the Brandenburg Gate/Berlin Wall designs. If you don’t fancy a beer mug, you can select a B-medal wooden nutcracker or a 14-inch-tall snowman, complete with a green outfit, hat, scarf and shovel.
How do I get to the walk, you ask? It starts at the TV 03 Turnhalle at the intersection of Jahnstrasse and Landstuhler Strasse in Ramstein. The easiest way to get there is to take the road connecting the towns of Landstuhl and Ramstein, heading toward Ramstein, and you’ll see the Turnhalle on the left, less than a half-kilometer from the little traffic circle near the Shell service station.
In the past, parking has been tight, but as the early birds leave after completing the walk, spaces will open up.
Make the effort: The Turkey Trot is a unique volksmarching experience that you don’t want to miss.
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If you want to attend a couple of interesting walks this weekend — after all, there is all that turkey and stuffing to burn off — consider Saturday evening’s walk in Colmar, France. It is an evening illumination walk through the city and its Christmas markets.
The start hall is at the Cercle Saint Martin on Avenue Joffre, and you can depart between 2 and 8 p.m. You must complete the walk by 10 p.m.
Then on Sunday, you can attend another interesting walk in Luxembourg city. It starts at the Centre Culturel on Avenue Victor Hugo in the Limpertsberg district. This walk’s flier states that the event will go through the Luxembourg city Christmas market. You can start walking at 7 a.m. The cut-off time to start the six- and 12-kilometer trails is 2 p.m., and noon for the 20k route.
If you are not tempted by a Christmas market, or just want to stay closer to home, there is the walk in Landscheid, near Bitburg and Spangdahlem.
Start at the Eifellandhalle in Landscheid between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. and finish by 5 p.m. This walk is for IVV credit only.
The Eifel region is beautiful, and there used to be an Eifel Wanderers walking club in the Bitburg/Spangdahlem area. If you know anything about this club, please let us know. We get the occasional inquiry about walks in the Eifel region and would like to get in touch with the Wanderers again.
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Having just mentioned Spangdahlem and the Eifel region of Germany, we enjoyed a nice trip there a couple of weeks ago.
It had been a few months since our last trip through the Eifel and it was a joy to see the beautiful scenery again. The weather down and back was good for driving, but while we were trying to enjoy lunch at the outside food stands at the Spangdahlem Winter Bazaar, we were pelted by heavy rain. We found space inside one of the tents to sit and enjoy our lunch with one of Lorraine’s colleagues.
We were very successful in our shopping. We purchased artwork from our friends Peter Dupré and Michel Hothum (formerly Beberashvili). Bob can’t wait to get to the frame shop to work on these items.
Some pottery from Soufflenheim, France, and pewter Christmas ornaments finished our official shopping list; the rest of the stuff we bought was extra!
It was a good start to the Christmas shopping season.
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The Stuttgart German American Wandering Club is planning a trip to Erstein, France, on Dec. 12. This is a very popular evening walk through the city aglow with Christmas lights. For more information about this event or the club, contact Ann at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit its Web page at www.sgawc.com.
Dec. 12 is also the date of the Bastogne Historical Walk.
If you are a World War II history enthusiast, this is the weekend to be in Bastogne, Belgium. The walk is the centerpiece for numerous activities designed to honor those who fought and died during the Battle of the Bulge.
One of the special attractions will be the showing of the movie, "Bedford: The Town They Left Behind." For more information see www.bastognehistoricwalk.com. See you in Bastogne!
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A hearty "merci" to our fellow walkers who took time out of their days to mail us brochures. This week they are: William Castro and Maureen McHugh-Castro; Ramona and Horst Kechelen; John, Mary and Tess Laub; Tim and Luchi Lynch; "Pat" and Cheryl Patterson; and Bob Gambert, Lew Harrison, Wayne Henry and Nancy Shawley.
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Miscellaneous short notes about this week’s events:
• The prize for walking in Windach, Germany, is a set of three small Christmas ornaments.
• Ramona Kechelen sent a note stating that the walk in Herzogenaurach is near outlet stores for Puma, Adidas and other shoes.
• The five-kilometer walk at Merselo, Netherlands, is a special children’s route featuring Sint Nicolaas and Zwarte Piet.
• Clark Soeldner’s tidbits for this week’s Italian walks: "The Breganze event is a nice walk through the Torcolato hills. The start is at the Cantina Beato Bartolomeo wine company. Your start card will get you a 10 percent discount on wine purchased between 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m."
E-mail volksmarch information to email@example.com. Mail brochures to Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO, AE, 09752.