Volksmarch column for the October 15 edition
Heidelberg International Wandering Club’s annual walk was another big success, according to the club’s Cath and Rob Floyd. In spite of the higher tempo of operations and recent deployments, more than 2,600 people enjoyed the beautiful trails in the Heidelberg area.
The five-, 11- and 22-kilometer courses gave walkers, joggers and runners the chance to enjoy Heidelberg’s scenic and historic sites during the Sept. 19 and 20 walks. The shorter distance was perfect for beginners who took only one hour to complete their walk. Some chose to run or jog the longer routes, while many enjoyed a leisurely pace and stopped periodically to see the sights.
“A march of this size required an outpouring of volunteer labor from club members, and they answered the call, cooking wurst, steaks, burgers and [french fries], pouring beer, wine and soft drinks, selling shirts at the boutique, registering marchers, decorating, cleaning, and performing the multitude of other tasks that made the march a success,” Cath said. “We had over 100 volunteers helping out this year and my thanks go out to all those who once again helped make this annual German-American event a great success.”
Awards for the largest groups in attendance were presented on Sunday by Lt. Col. Robert L. White, the U.S. Army Garrison Heidelberg commander, and Rob, HIWC vice president. The Special Beer Steins and wine went to the clubs with the most members present: Heidelberg Rohrbach-Boxberg, with 103 marchers; Malsch, with 76; Schomberg with 70; the Stuttgart German-American Wandering Club with 69; and Rothenburg with 50.
The top three winners of the Commander’s Cup for Heidelberg military and community groups were the Heidelberg Medical Department Activity with 50, Girl Scouts with 39, and headquarters U.S. Army Europe with 26 participants.
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With the Christmas market season rapidly approaching, we love to combine a volksmarch with a Christmas market. So, if you know of a volksmarch near a Christmas market, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can spread the word.
We understand that the HIWC is planning a trip to the Cologne area on Dec. 5 and 6. It will be doing two walks and visiting the Cologne Christmas market. The cut-off date to sign up for this walk is Nov. 1. For more information, contact the club at HIWC@yahoo.com.
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There are two walks this weekend that are convenient for folks near Stuttgart. On Saturday, you can walk in Kleinglattbach, northwest of Stuttgart. You can start the five-, 10- and 20-kilometer routes between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Halle am See start hall. The club is also offering a marathon route that can be started between 7 and 9 a.m.
Then on Sunday you can walk in Böblingen. Start the six-, 11- and 20-kilometer distances between 7 a.m. and 1 p.m. The prize for completing the route is a plant holder that looks like an old hiking shoe with a couple of elves sitting on it. This walk has been designated as a Stammtisch walk for the Stuttgart club. Look for its blue flag at the start hall and introduce yourself to these avid walkers.
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Big time thanks again this week to the following: William Castro and Maureen McHugh-Castro; John and Evelyn Golembe; Ramona and Horst Kechelen; John, Mary and Tess Laub; Tim and Luchi Lynch; John and Patty Marsh; “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:
• Saturday’s walk in Strasbourg, France, is an evening illumination walk. You can start the walk between 3 and 8 p.m., and must finish the 10k route before 10 p.m. Make sure you take a flashlight, just in case.
• For the toy-car collector, your souvenir will be a 1953 Cadillac Eldorado for walking the five-, 10- or 20-kilometer trails this year at the Wanderclub Heroldsberg e.V. event in Germany. Start between 7 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday and between 7 a.m. and noon Sunday.
Notes from Clark Soeldner, our Italian walking connection:
• If you walk at Orti di Bonavigo on Sunday, your prize will be a half-pound of tortellini and a half-pound of tagliatello. The organizers’ flier notes that all are new courses this year.
• The start for the Cellatica walk is at the Cantina Cooperativa Cellatica Gussago at Via Caporalino 23. Due to the hills, you will receive extra credit in your kilometer book for the two longer routes.
• After the Sernaglia della Battaglia walk, there will be a pasta party for all participants. The two shorter routes are flat, while the longer trails are in the hills.
E-mail volksmarch information to email@example.com. Mail brochures to Bob and Lorraine Huffaker, CMR 460, Box 278, APO, AE, 09752.