Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer Solstice

This Father's Day, we got in touch with our German side and celebrated a little thing called Sonnwendfeier, or Summer Solstice, at one of Jeremy's favorite places, a German beer hall called Blob's Park. At Blob's, the smell of kraut and schnitzel fill the air and the house band The Rheinlanders crank out some mean polka tunes. Oh yeah, and there's beer. Lots of it.

Sundays are very family friendly at Blob's, and this day was amazingly so, as we were treated to performances by the Alt Washingtonia Bavaria Dancers. We're talking lederhosen, massive wooden horns (you know, like the ones on the Ricola cough drop commercial? Yep, those ones. Google says they are called alphorns, fyi.), women playing duets with cow bells, and a whole lot of jumping and twirling. Maribelle was thoroughly entertained and tore up the dance floor with her signature moves, which involve lots of enthusiastic swinging of her elbows.

Toward the end of the night, the festivities moved to the picturesque outdoors, where there was even more singing and dancing, followed by a bonfire. Quick history lesson -- in celebration of Sonnwendfeier, Germans light large bonfires in the mountains for good luck and good crops. And then they take a few flaming branches, place them on the ground, and all willing participants jump over the flaming bundle for various forms of good luck. Unfortunately for us, Little Miss Belle was nearing a meltdown, so there was no fire jumping for us.

And an added bonus is that we got to share the experience with my BFF Katrina, who flew in from Chicago for the weekend. Blob's is just one of those places you want everyone to know about and experience for themselves, because it truly defies any explanation.

Jeremy is such a huge fan of this place that he even shot and edited a package and wrote an online article about Blob's Park for CNN. Here's a little taste:

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