Barbarossa fest lures visitors to city

Petra Lessoing
Kaiserslautern American

***image1***Kaiserslautern will celebrate its annual Barbarossa fest “Swinging Lautern” Thursday through Sept. 3 in the center of town. Streets and squares will turn into stages for international music presentations, fashion shows, children’s activities and culinary specialties.

Until three years ago, the event was offered to promote shopping in the center of Kaisers-lautern. Now, the emphasis is on an international musical program with swing, blues, boogie, jazz, soul and salsa. The Old Jazz Union will organize the musical performances with renowned artists such as the Louisiana All-Stars, Jazz Band Ball Orchestra Krakau, Satchmo Polens, Nicole Needs 2B Funky, Unnerhaus Jazzband and Uptown Shufflers. Also, marching bands will walk through the streets to entertain people.

Open air stages will be set up in front of Stiftskirche, on Stiftsplatz, Altenhof, near Sparda Bank and at the corner of Fackel- and Kerstrasse.

The stores that are members of the sponsoring advertising association “Kaiser in Lautern” will have special activities.

They will set up street displays and offer special services such as fashion shows, flea markets and a book market. Children’s activities include face painting and a merry-go-round. The kiddie train will start its rides through the center at 11 a.m. each day. Thursday, children can enter the train on Riesenstrasse (near the bowl fountain); Sept. 2 on Marktstrasse (near Subway) and Sept. 3 on Riesenstrasse (near Erika leather store). Free tickets for the ride are available in each store belonging to the advertising association.

Culinary specialties of all kinds are available in food tents and stands where more than 15 well-known restaurants from the area present their food.

The Barbarossa fest will officially open at 6 p.m. Thursday from the stage on Altenhof. Sept. 2 and 3, the event will take place from 11 a.m. to midnight.

Parking in Kaiserslautern is free on Saturdays, except for parking garages.