By their top place
finish at the Gaufest in Orlando Florida last year Andrea Edelhauser
and Kevin Walker secured the opportunity to compete at the Preisplattln
um den Bayerischen Löwen. 21 members of Edelweiss Detroit travelled to
Bavaria to support them.
This exhibition of Schuhplattlen and Dirndldrehen started in
2002 and is certainly the highest order of this important aspect of Bavarian
culture. 245 individual and 30 groups from 8 Bavarian Gaue and
Gauverband Nordamerika were in Gauting near Starnberg to compete and
show a dedication to these traditions of Bavaria. 79 American and Canadian
Trachtler were among the crowd in the 2000 seat Festzelt to observe. The
skill and dedication that the North Americans again brought to Bavaria is
felt with respect and pride by all Trachtler. From the encouragement
and advice to the relaxed atmosphere and sportsmanship there was much for us
to absorb from our Trachtenkameraden.
After announcement of prizes there was little rest in the tent before
D’Wuermlust Trachten-verein hosted their Heimat-abend. Several
bands and dance groups entertained throughout the evening. Included in the
program was a performance of 27 North American couples dancing a
Schuhplattler. A set by our Edelweiss Tanzlmusik also was well received
by the Bavarians.
Sunday morning after a mass was celebrated in the Festzelt. 70 units
assembled for the 2 kilometer parade. For the first time North American
Trachtler walked behind their Gaufahne at a Bavarian
Trachtenfest. All Trachtler, Feuerwehr, Kapellen, Schöne
Müncherin and other Vereine returned to the tent and continued
the celebration with more music, dance and refreshment.
While in Bavaria, Edelweiss Detroit was privileged to enjoy many other
activities arranged by Bavarian Trachtenkameraden. A concert by 7
Blasmusik groups was part of a week-long festival of brass music
throughout Bavaria. During this concert our member and Musikwart Rick
Michels was recognized for his dedication to Bavarian Volksmusik with
the playing of his composition ”Edelweiss Jubiläumsmarsch”.
At a tour of the Trachtenkulturzentrum of the Bayerischer
Trachtenverband we were joined by 22 other North American Trachtler. The
six buildings their restoration and construction, the documentation and
preservation of artifacts show a great commitment by the Bavarian Trachtler
for their culture. This group was invited to the hospitality of D’Wurmtaler-
Menzing at their Vereinsheim for a Grillabend.
A Volkstanzabend hosted by Trachtenkameraden in Rottenbuch
near Weilheim included another performance of our Tanzlmusik. This
was yet another example of our acceptance by Bavarian Trachtler, a
most enjoyable honor.
These and other highlights of the week made for an experience without equal
by any of this group. We North American Trachtler own a lot to the Bavarians
who advise, entertain, and accept us into the Trachtenbewegung. We
hope that we can soon return their generous hospitality.