Wine street offers car-free fun

Petra Lessoing
Kaiserslautern American

***image1***The German Wine Street will become the center of the Pfalz the last Sunday in August.
For the 20th time the region will celebrate its car-free adventure day Sunday. Nine months before the beginning of the Soccer World Cup in Germany, the event’s motto will be “The Pfalz in soccer fever.” Germany’s oldest tourist route will be closed from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., 80 kilometers from Bockenheim in the north to Schweigen in the south. The car-free route leading through Germany’s biggest wine-growing area will turn into a busy bike trail, skaters’ and hikers’ route.

The Minister President of Rheinland-Pfalz, Kurt Beck, and the Palatinate Wine Queen, Sylvia Benzinger, world referee Dr. Markus Merk from Kaiserslautern and Kaiserslautern’s former goalkeeper, Ronnie Hellström, will officially open the event at 10 a.m. in Neustadt-Diedesfeld.

About 30 villages and towns along the German Wine Street will offer entertaining programs with many attractions. With an emphasis on the Soccer World Cup, visitors can show their soccer talents, try to score a goal, measure the pressure of their shots and take part in street soccer. In Diedesfeld, the city of Kaiserslautern, where several matches will be played, will have an information booth and a human table soccer game.

Along the car-free route there will be music, sports and games. Palatinate wine and champagne as well as regional culinary specialties will be served in restaurants, tents and booths.

The traditional 10-kilometer run will start in two places again. The route in the north goes from Bockenheim to Kirchheim and the one in the south from Weissenburg to Bad Bergzabern. The starting time is 10 a.m.

Organizers ask all bicyclists, walkers and skaters for mutual respect. They expect about 300,000 visitors and recommend coming to the German Wine Street in public transportation vehicles such as the train or bus. For more information, visit or