SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany --
Summer continues in the Eifel-Mosel area with pleasant temperatures and more highlight festivals to come this weekend.
The community of Niederkail will host its 2016 summer carnival parade at 6:11 p.m., Sept. 3 through the streets of town.
The city of Bitburg invites all to a large-scale vehicle exhibition, featuring more than 2,500 cars, Sept. 3-4 at “Auf Merlick” and on Dieselstrasse.
But one event has become popular over the years in Germany and abroad: the Bernkastel Middle Mosel wine festival, scheduled to take place Sept. 1-5.
Organizers say they expect about 200,000 visitors to arrive for the wine festival this year. The event is known to be the largest festival of its kind on the Mosel.
Again this year, there will be a long list of entertainment events for festival visitors to enjoy. More than 90 wine-growing towns and groups will participate in the festivities, especially during the planned parade, Sept. 4, with more than 1,500 participants.
In Bernkastel, people can experience Riesling wines at one of the town's old wine cellars.
The Bernkastel festival will start Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. with the opening of the “wine tasting street” and with welcoming words by Wolfgang Port, the mayor of Bernkastel city. On his side will be wine queen, Alexandra I, who can be admired in a costume.
At this time, background music will occur by the “Bernkastel Buergerwehr” band with a public raffle to follow.
The local “Lyra” music association will entertain from 8-9 p.m. in the wine tasting street, while the “Rock Pilots” entertain the younger crowds from 8 p.m. to midnight on Karlsbad Platz. The “Out of Time … Beatles Revue” band will be on stage fom 9-11:30 p.m. in the market square.
All beverage and food stands will open at noon with a special art and handcraft market taking place from 3-8 p.m. along the Mosel shore.
The official opening amusement rides and attractions as well as the art market is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.
From 10:30 a.m. on, bands and music ensembles from throughout Germany, the local Mosel region and Holland will provide fanfare music, Dixieland and jazz tunes as well as modern pop and rock tunes.
Locations for band performances that take place throughout the festival are mainly the market square, located in the heart of the city, in the wine-tasting street, on Karlsbad Platz, and in various other spots, where marching band ensembles will sporadically appear.
Most rides, the market stands and the parking lots are located on the opposite site of the Mosel Bridge, away from the old city.
Among the highlights of the middle Mosel wine festival is always a giant fireworks display from the Burg Landshut Castle and the Mosel shore, to take place from 9 to 9:30 p.m., Sept. 3. It is known as the biggest pyrotechnic spectacle on the Mosel.
Built during the 13th century, the castle ruins lie atop a vine-clad hillside and make a wonderful backstage for the fireworks. More music by European groups, wine tasting and fun is scheduled for Sept. 4. Performances will start at the town's Moselland hall and continue all day throughout town.
Another highlight of the Bernkastel Middle Mosel wine festival is a colorful folk parade Sept. 4 at 2 p.m., featuring about 100 floats, fanfares and bands parading through the city. This an excellent opportunity for photographers to indulge. A variety of music will occur in the market square until late in the evening.
The 45-minute drive from Spangdahlem to Bernkastel along the Mosel River is a delightful scenic route which takes travelers through valleys and around hills. For those people who would like to get there a bit faster, the Autobahn A-60 goes to Wittlich, from where people can continue their route via a state road.
With its medieval architecture, Bernkastel-Kues is a favorite holiday site for Mosel travelers and wine connoisseurs.
People should keep in mind that the city will be extremely crowded during the Bernkastel Middle Mosel wine festival with regular tourists and festival visitors, this, especially Saturday evening, during and after the fireworks display.
Also Sept. 4 will be a busy day in Bernkastel prior and after the parade which starts off at 2 p.m. That’s why it is recommended to get to any events early in order to find convenient parking. People may have to walk a mile or two to get to the activities from a designated parking lot.
It is not advised to bring small children to the evening events on Sept 3.
Since police controls will be enforced throughout the festival, people must arrange for transportation after consuming alcohol.