CEL­E­BRAT­ING GER­MAN UNITY

Ber­lin fêtes the mile­stone 25th an­niver­sary of a na­tion re­united.

Where Berlin - - FRONT PAGE -

In 1990, one year af­ter the Wall fell, Ger­many was of­fi­cially re­united. When East once again merged with West, the Ger­man Demo­cratic Re­pub­lic (East Ger­many) ceased to ex­ist and the re­united coun­try em­barked upon a new chap­ter in its history. The event is com­mem­o­rated each year on 3 Oc­to­ber, of­fi­cially known as Ger­man Unity Day ( Tag der deutschen Ein­heit), and with 2015 mark­ing the 25th an­niver­sary, the whole coun­try — and the cap­i­tal city in par­tic­u­lar — is plan­ning a cel­e­bra­tion be­fit­ting the oc­ca­sion.

For the main fes­tiv­i­ties, head to the party mile stretch­ing along Straße der 17. Juni, be­gin­ning at the Bran­den­burg Gate (p. 36), for a fam­ily-friendly street fes­ti­val fea­tur­ing live en­ter­tain­ment, beer gar­dens, and Deutsch­land del­i­ca­cies. Fair­ground at­trac­tions, in­clud­ing a fer­ris wheel with sweep­ing views of Tier­garten park, keep the kids en­ter­tained, while adults can toast unity with a Ber­liner

Weisse, a re­gional vari­a­tion of north­ern white beer, of­ten fla­vored with rasp­berry or woodruff syrup. But for many revel­ers, the best is the Wurst, whether that be Bratwurst, Weißwurst, or Ber­lin’s ubiq­ui­tous Cur­ry­wurst, which is so pop­u­lar it has its own mu­seum (p. 39).

For a more low-key oc­ca­sion honor­ing the black, red, and gold (the col­ors of the Ger­man flag), at­tend a spe­cial con­cert at the neo-Re­nais­sance Ber­lin Cathe­dral (p. 36), known for its per­fect acous­tics and 7200-pipe or­gan, or a per­for­mance by ac­tor Klaus Maria Bran­dauer at the Konz­erthaus (p. 54). As an ed­u­ca­tional op­tion, you can learn about ev­ery­day life in the re­united coun­try at the ex­hibit Uni­fi­ca­tion: Ger­man So­ci­ety In The Tran­si­tion at the Deutsches His­torisches Mu­seum (p. 41). A short train ride from city cen­ter, Rennbahn Hoppe­garten (Goetheallee 1, www.hoppe­garten.com) holds a cel­e­bra­tory horse race at which the win­ner will re­ceive the Westminster Award of Ger­man Unity. Or you can do as many Ger­mans do and sim­ply en­joy the hol­i­day with a bar­be­cue or pic­nic in one of Ber­lin’s many parks.

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