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BellaOnline's German Culture Editor

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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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German Summer Drink Recipes
Summer in a glass. Cool drinks for the hot days of German summers range from all types of Fruit Bowle and Radler, to Apfelschorle and Cola-Schoppen. The names might be different but there's something for everyone, and they are ideal for sunless as well as sun filled days.

German Wedding Traditions
Germany's regions have many of their own, sometimes "unusual", wedding traditions; although May is the most popular month to marry throughout the country. Preparations and traditions surrounding a ceremony begin weeks before it takes place, and the festivities can last for days.

German Wine and Vineyards
Grapes arrived in Germany via the conquering Romans, and ancient traditions surrounding hillside vineyards with huge sundials and the annual harvest continue. But the German wine industry has changed, and is returning to producing high quality wines so Liebfraumilch is on the way out.

German Words Used in English
Where did that word originate? You might be surprised. "Gemuetlich" and "Kindergarten" are at home in English and German, as are many other words which traveled from Germany to international worlds of business, science, technology, history and culture, and there absorbed into English.

Germany 1946/47, The Hunger Winter
Europe lay in rubble, and the winter of 1946/1947 was the coldest in living memory. Known in Germany as the time of "Weisser Tod", white death, and "Schwarzer Hunger", black hunger, hundreds of thousands died. Weihnachten was different that year, Spring and New Year held no promises.

Germany and its Cheese Culture
From the North Sea to Allgaeu, Germany's "foodie" favorite, Cheese, is produced in anything from small mountainside farms to industrial dairies countrywide. Hundreds of regional specialties and national varieties range from mild and buttery to spicy, highly flavored and less than fragrant.

Germany and its Storks
Storks are among Germany's favorite wildlife. "Stars" of myth and superstition, with a "theme route", their return to nests on Germany's cliff-ledges, rooftops, chimneys and purpose-built towers after spending winter in warmer climates, is a signal spring is not far away.

Germany and its Turkish German Communities
There was no history of immigration in Germany when the first Turkish ‘guest workers’ arrived as cheap labor to fuel the country’s ‘Economic Miracle’. Not expected to stay fifty years later Turkish Germans have powered German industry, settled in its cities and their influence is seen everywhere.

Germany's 'Lucky' Chimney Sweeps
Tradition and superstition surrounds Chimney Sweeps in Europe. Including Germany where the practice and customs of the "Lucky" Schornsteinfeger, in black gold buttoned suit and top hat, are rooted far in the past. In "real life", crafted or in chocolate, a favorite "Good Luck" symbol.

Germany's Beer Gardens
From early Spring through Summer and Autumn a visit to a Beer Garden is a seasonal "must do" in Germany. Originally a way of using chestnut tree shaded areas that covered 19th century underground Bavarian beer storage cellars, they soon became a popular, even fashionable, pastime.

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