The weekend after Thanksgiving heralds the start of the Christmas season, as
becomes the set for Macy’s Light Up the Square
and Downtown Dazzle
, but this year, a new addition to the festivities adds a distinctively German twist. Cincideutsch
, Cincinnati’s newest German society, will host a Christkindlmarkt on the Square, Nov. 23-25.
A Christkindlmarkt is a traditional German market that pops up around Christmas time. In Germany, the markets start at the beginning of Advent and last until Christmas. Cincideutsch's Christkindlmarkt is Cincinnati's first open-air Christmas market, and although it's only one weekend, the group hopes that in the future, the market will last longer, says Olaf Scheil, Cincideutsch’s president and one of its co-founders.
Scheil came to Cincinnati 14 years ago for work, and after the company he moved for closed, he decided to stay. Many of the members of Cincideutsch are German natives who have moved to Cincinnati, or are Americans who have lived in Germany, like Linda McAlister, co-founder, VP and treasurer of Cincideutsch. Peter Rother, the third co-founder, is VP and secretary.
Plans have been in the works for a Christkindlmarkt since Cincideutsch was founded in 2011. “It was something we all missed about Germany, so we decided to start one here,” McAlister says.
Cincideutsch’s Christkindlmarkt will have feature 10 booths selling things that are both German in nature and local. The Germania Society of Cincinnati
, Munich Sister City Association of Greater Cincinnati
, Rookwood Pottery
, Servatii Pastry Shop and Deli
, Ultimate Almonds and Mecklenburg Gardens
will have booths selling Christmas ornaments and crafts, beer and Glühwein
(German mulled wine).
Visitors can also buy special edition mugs and tote bags designed by Saint Ursula Academy
’s design program. The students from Saint Ursula’s also designed the Christkindlmarkt posters.
Scheil didn’t want Cincideutsch’s Christkindlmarkt to be pop-up tents in the middle of the street, so the booths resemble traditional German-style houses. The market will look like a little German village lit up for Christmas, he says.
Cincideutsch is still seeking sponsors for the market; it has one official sponsor so far, Christian Moerlein Brewery
By Caitlin Koenig
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