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g German Culture Site

BellaOnline's German Culture Editor

Facts and Traditions

Life and living in Germany, some of the country´s facts, figures, personalities, and entrenched traditions, ranging from informative and useful to fun and "now who would have thought that?"

Father's Day in Germany star
German Father's Day can be a bit of a surprise. Held on Ascension Day, so changing each year, the variable date is not the only difference from "Father's Day" in other countries. Consumption of alcohol, and ending the day intoxicated, are major features of the celebration.

Forest Schools, Germany's Waldkindergarten star
Waldkindergärten are nature's preschool for children where, whatever the weather, classroom walls are replaced by fresh air, the natural world and exploration. Based on a system from the 19th century Germany, forest schools are favorites with children and parents, so there are long waiting lists.

Gardening by the Moon in Germany star
Often thought of as a New Age trend or old superstition Moon Gardening is science based, with evidence suggesting a connection between the sky's energy and that of earth. In Germany the system has been followed for generations with 'Moon Gardening' calendars a big hit as Christmas gifts.

German Bread - Fast Facts star
Germany is a "Bread Paradise". With over 3050 registered varieties, almost all available types of grain are used from wheat, rye, barley and oats to millet, corn, rice and potato starch. While bread rolls go under so many different names in the various regions it is easier simply to point.

German Inventions in Everyday Use star
Germany's inventors and scientists, past and present, helped build the country's reputation for invention and technology, with many of the items now used in homes worldwide, including coffee filters and toothpaste, not created in laboratories, but German kitchens, attics and workshops.

Germans and their Beer, Fast Facts star
Germany's beer has a culture of its own, and its own day, "Tag des Deutschen Bieres". Beer/flüssiges Brot, liquid bread, is a "food" in Bavaria - even the smallest region has a brewery, and don't forget it is important to raise one thumb when ordering.

Germany Facts - Life Behind the Beer and Sausages star
Germany, the country and its people. Richly diverse, the world's fifth largest economy and Europe's industrial powerhouse, filled with castles, medieval villages, unspoiled nature, mountain ranges, stunning scenery, culture of every variety. And a complex history.

Germany Fun Facts star
There's a Chancellor Angela Merkel Barbie Doll, German affection for red Hungarian paprika means it's added to everything from potato chips and meat to sauces, in Bavaria beer is officially 'food', and phone calls are answered only by the surname, never a greeting. Some fun facts.

Germany's Garden Gnomes, Gartenzwerge star
Garden gnomes belong to Germany like Bratwurst and Fußball-soccer. Gartenzwerge disappear in the fall, re-appear with spring and spend summer protecting German gardens; kitsch, folklore, good luck symbols and for a protector about as far from frightening as it is possible to be.

Germany, its Neighbors and a New Image star
Germany lives in peace and harmony with its neighbors in its central position at the heart of today’s European Union, but this was not always the case. A cross section of Europeans were asked what image modern Germany has in the eyes of its neighbors. There were some interesting results.

Groundhog Day, Hedgehogs and Candlemas star
February 2nd is Groundhog Day, an annual tradition with roots which lie in a Christian festival, age old European and German superstitions about hedgehogs, the weather, and pagan celebrations bound to the cycles of nature.

HARIBO Gummi Bears, Germany's Cult Candy star
Gummy Bears began life in 1922, as fruit gummi Dancing Bears in a small German confectionery company; based on dancing bears and a Teddy Bear. Today they are a cult candy, and not only for children but also "grown-ups", used for couture dresses, party "Hedgehogs" and Vodka cocktails.

Munich Oktoberfest - Fast Facts star
Albert Einstein worked there as an electrician, an intoxicated dachshund "came to" in Lost and Found, electricity used would give a home for four 52 years of power, and German emigrants have begun versions all over the world...but "Oktoberfest" began in Munich over 200 years ago.

Oktoberfest in Munich – Fun Facts star
It's "Oktoberfest" although most of it takes place in September, an "Angel" on a hiatus from heaven attends every year, and one Munich Mayor opened it shouting "I'zapt os" instead of "O'zapft is", (it's tapped)...before any beer was consumed.

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