September 18th Octoberfest Begins in Germany

There are times you might wish to live in Germany. They say it is a beautiful country made even more beautiful during October Fest! The date commemorates the wedding of Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese in 1810 and the dates today do vary, but it’s all about beer and food and the party! That’s a win-win-win! It begins in Munich, Germany quickly making it’s way through all of Germany. So break out your Lederhosen, Stein and Sausages and have a good time celebrating the upcoming, and by gone, marriage that helped unite Germany.

How to celebrate – Visit Germany. Learn how to make your own beer. Buy some Lederhosen.

July 15th Gummi Worm Day

July 15th Gummi Worm Day

If you feel like chewing on something all day long try a gummi worm! They come in numerous flavors and sweet or sour. The Gummi Worm was developed by a German company, Trolli. A common treat for kids is to place these gummi worms in chocolate pudding and make believe they are mud pies complete with worms. Talk about a sugar rush! There are bears, and horses and you name it, there is probably a gummi made in nearly every shape and form, but worms seem to be the favorite.

How to celebrate – Have some Gummi Worms. Visit Germany. Go to a candy store.

June 6th D-Day, WW II

There are somethings we should never forget and D-Day is one of them. June 6th, 1944 was the beginning of the end or World War 2 when allied troops from American, Britain and Canada landed on 5 beaches in France. The US attacked Omaha and Utah beaches, UK Gold & Sword beaches and Canada Juno beach. 156,000 men gained a foothold in Europe against Germany though it cost some 4,000 their lives. The operation was a success to some degree because the Germans were fooled, knowing the invasion was coming but thinking it would fall elsewhere. Landings had already taken place in Italy but the final blow came in France on June 6th, 1944.

How to celebrate – Remember those who paid the supreme price to retake Europe. Visit the Normandy landing areas if you go to Europe. Read and the landings and sacrifice made by the Allied soldiers.

May 4th Star Wars Day

So I keep telling this story and some people say it’s right, and some say it’s wrong but I am sticking with it. The day began as a mistake by a German News TV company, N24, in 2005. Via a translation mistake they took “May the force be with you” as “May the 4th be with you” and hence “Stars War Day” was created on May the 4th. Right or not it’s a good story and at least sort of makes sense. Or at least just as much sense as “May the force be with you” because isn’t the source already something with you whether you want it or not?

How to celebrate – Watch Star Wars. Visit Germany. Learn to become a translator.

April 26th National Pretzel Day

Though the pretzel is often associated with German food, or snacks, it actually was created around 610 AD in Southern France by Catholic Monks. Some insist that pretzels first appeared in Italy, also made by Monks, who created them as treats for children who said their prayers. The original pretzels were designed to look like arms folded over the chest, as if saying prayers. Of course the Germans claim some credit for the first pretzel as well so about all we do know is that it was created in Europe, somewhere. The first pretzel in the United States was made by Julius Sturgis in 1850 at Lititz, Pennsylvania. While today has some listing a 1983 Pretzel Day we do know that Governor Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania made a pretzel holiday in 2003.

How to celebrate – Have a pretzel today. Learn how to make your own pretzel. Visit a German restuarant.

April 26th National Pretzel Day

When we think of pretzels we often think Germany, and beer. Well, the world’s oldest snack food actually came out of France around 610 AD when Monks created the treat to represent children’s folded arms while in prayer. You can get pretzels salted, and unsalted, and in numerous different flavors today and generally speaking, while not exactly healthy, they aren’t all that bad for us. You can get hard pretzels or soft pretzels, big pretzels or small pretzels, you can even get them mixed with other snacks like popcorn, peanuts and raisins. (And you don’t have to have beer but it does make them better)

How to celebrate – Have some pretzels. Learn how to make your own pretzels. Become a Monk.

March 20th Snowman Burning Day

March 20th Snowman Burning Day

Here’s a fun day! It’s time to burn any snowmen that might still be around. Now, it’s nearly impossible to burn a real snowman, so build your own made out of straw, or wood, or anything that will burn. That’s what they do in Germany for the “Rose Sunday Festival”. It is meant to mark the changes of the season, and the end of winter. Is a snowman made out of anything other than snow really a snowman? Well, I guess it’s all in the way you look at it.

How to celebrate – Look for a snowman. Build your own straw man. Break out the hot dogs and marshmallows and throw a snowman burning party.

June 6th D-Day

June 6th -_ D-Day

156,000 soldiers landed on Omaha, Utah, Gold, Sword and Juno beaches to reclaim Europe from Nazi Germany on June 6th, 1944. Thousands would give their all on this day, Canadians, British, French and Americans. It was the one day in the early part of June that had clear enough weather the Allies could actually attempt the landing, and an attempt it was. The Germans had built up the beach defenses to an extreme and though the Allies were fairly sure they could hold some of the beaches it really was done on a hope and a prayer. The landings were preceded by parachute drops and the resistance causing as much havoc as they could. The landing, requested by the Russian, did succeed however and it was the beginning of the end for the Third Reich.

How to celebrate – Remember all those who served in World War 2 (there aren’t many left). Visit the beaches where many of the wrecks have been left reminding us of the day. Read a book written from those who survived the day.

May 4th Star Wars Day

May 4th Star Wars Day

We all know Star Wars; Han Solo, Darth Vader, Princess Leia, Jedi warriors, etc., etc, etc. But did you know today became a holiday by mistake? The famous line, “May the fourth be with you” came from a post by the Conserbative Party when Margaret Thatcher won the Prime Minister seat. But now Star Wars fans all over have adopted it as a holiday!

How to celebrate – Watch any of the 200 or so Star Wars movies today. Dress up like your favorite character from the series. Visit a Star Wars museum.

February 2nd Ground Hog Day

Today we celebrate Ground Hogs Day. It’s also Candlemas which somehow is related. Ground Hog day was started in Germany apparently, coming to America in the 1800’s where it is celebrate every year on February 2nd, telling us whether winter is over or will extend later into year. In Pennsylvania (Where the Germans mainly settled) the Ground Hog is called Punxsutawney Phil. If he sees his shadow then winter will continue, if he does not, winter is over.

There is a poem that supposedly explains it.

If Candlemas be fair and bright, Winter has another flight, if Candlemas brings clouds and rain, winter will not come again.

Phil isn’t the only ground hog though. Ohio has Buckeye Chuck and Georgia has General Beauregard Lee.

How to celebrate – Go see Phil, Chuck or Lee. Celebrate winter! Enjoy Spring.