Germans observe Ascension Day, Father’s Day Thursday

by Petra Lessoing
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Courtesy photoGermans will observe Father’s Day Thursday with family fests, such as the one at the barbecue hut in Landstuhl.
Courtesy photo
Germans will observe Father’s Day Thursday with family fests, such as the one at the barbecue hut in Landstuhl.

Germans observe a religious holiday Thursday called “Christi Himmelfahrt,” or Ascension Day. The Bible says Christ’s ascent into heaven took place on the 40th day after Easter.

First, Christians celebrated the fest together with Pentecost. Later, in the fourth century, it was observed as a holiday of its own.

Besides celebrating the church fest, Germans also recognize Father’s Day on Ascension Day.

For years, it was customary for men, young and old, fathers and non-fathers, to meet and have fun together. They went for long walks, and to quench their thirst, they took along a decorated handcart filled with beer cases or kegs. Origins of that men’s day dates back to German forefathers, who in the spring would walk through their land and fields and ask the gods for a fertile year. Afterward, they had a drink together.

Today, the holiday is an another day when families can do something together. They go on bike trips, hikes or have barbecues. Because Ascension Day is also an official holiday in Germany, stores, public institutions and banks will be closed.

Several communities in the KMC will sponsor festivals for the whole family. The Hauptstuhl Music Association will present a Father’s Day rock concert at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the local festival grounds near the forest. Celebrations will continue with a barbecue at 11 a.m. Thursday.

The Kolping Family will sponsor a family day starting at 11 a.m. at the Landstuhl Grillhütte (barbecue hut near Luitpoldstrasse and 10th Street).

The Reichenbach Music Association will start Father’s Day activities at 10 a.m. at the Alte Mühle in Reichenbach-Steegen, and the Singing Association Lyra Drehenthalerhof will have a barbecue at their grill hut at Drehenthalerhof near Otterberg.

A forest fest will lure visitors to Fritz-Claus-Hütte, located next to road L466 between Bruchmühlbach and Martinshöhe.