Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Fasching Begins - November 11

All Americans know about Oktoberfest, but few know about fasching. Fasching is the German Carnival. It officially begins each year on November 11th at 11:11 in the morning. This day marks an especially big event in the city of Cologne. Basically the city hosts a huge party. There is live music on the streets, the bars are packed and everyone wears costumes. (It's not an event appropriate for children). People travel from all over Germany and Europe to attend the party. It is common to see groups of friends all dressed in the same costume. (We were pirates.)

The costumes are somewhat different than American halloween costumes. First of all there aren't too many scary costumes as that is not the focus of the event. There are tons of animals. In fact it is common to see grown men in fuzzy bear, chicken, and other animal costumes. There are also police costumes, historical costumes such as Viking and Romans, ethnic costumes such as Scottish and Asian, American football player costumes, painters, pirates, punk rockers, 70's dress and many more fun and happy costumes that you can imagine.

It is very interesting to be in the train station when EVERYONE is wearing costumes. Mark your calendar! November 11.

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