Hessentag

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Hessentag
Adenauerallee-2011-hessentag-099.jpg
Genre Fair and festival
Date(s) ten days in June
Frequency annual
Location(s) varies
Inaugurated 1961; 56 years ago (1961)
Organised by Hesse
Butzbach, 2007
Hessentagspaar 2007

The Hessentag (German pronunciation: [ˈhɛsəntaːk]; English: Hessian Day) is an annual event, both fair and festival, organized by the German state of Hesse to represent the different regions of Hesse. The events are shown for a week to the visitors, with an emphasis on cultural displays and exhibitions. It is the oldest and largest state festival (Landesfest) in Germany.

History[edit]

The Hessentag was launched in 1961 by the prime minister of Hesse, Georg August Zinn. The event was intended to bring together long-time residents and migrants and to provide a sense of their new home to the many refugees and displaced persons.[1][2] Hesse itself had to catch up in terms of togetherness; the state was only created in 1945 by a decision of the victorious powers of World War II, from areas with different history and development. Georg August Zinn knew how to integrate the various new "Hessians", following his motto: "Hesse ist, wer Hesse sein will" (A Hessian is anybody who wants to be a Hessian").[1]

The first Hessentag in Alsfeld in 1961 was held on three days, presenting a fair and a parade of the different traditional costumes in Hesse. It attracted 40.000 visitors. Because of this success, an annual event was held.[1] The Hessentag is hosted by a different town each year. The event comes with publicity, improved infrastructure and restoration of historic buildings, but is expensive for the host town.[1][2]

Hessentag has undergone many changes.[2] Originally it was held on one weekend (three days), but grew to a week, including both weekends. It connects Hessian culture, tradition and modern lifestyle. The first focus of the event was presentation of traditions, especially the wide variety of costumes in Hesse and also the costumes of the new citizens who came after 1945. Concerts by international pop groups have become a featured part of the program. The Landesausstellung (State Exhibition) is shown in mobile halls, presenting the state government, the parliament, parliamentary groups, various state agencies and organizations, associations and clubs. Regions of Hesse are presented mostly from a tourist's point of view. Since 1971, for each Hessentag a couple (Hessentagspaar) is elected to represent it. Since 1993, a motto for the event was chosen by the hosting town, also a logo. The event is traditionally closed by a parade.[3]

Each year the event has attracted more than half a million visitors, not only from Hesse. More than one million visitors were counted first in Baunatal in 1999, the leader so far was Kassel, with nearly 1.9 million visitors in 2013. Other towns attracting more than one million visitors were Dietzenbach (2001), Butzbach (2007), Langenselbold (2009), Stadtallendorf (2010) and Oberursel (2011). The Hessentag 2012 was held in Wetzlar[3] and attracted 1.2 million visitors.[4]

Locations[edit]

No. Year Location Visitors Days
1 1961 Alsfeld 40,000 3
2 1962 Michelstadt 40,000 3
3 1963 Hanau 60,000 3
4 1964 Kassel 430,000 3
5 1965 Darmstadt 350,000 5
6 1966 Friedberg 120,000 3
7 1967 Bad Hersfeld 150,000 3
8 1968 Viernheim 150,000 3
9 1969 Gießen 200,000 3
10 1970 Wiesbaden 200,000 3
11 1971 Eschwege 160,000 3
12 1972 Marburg 250,000 9
13 1973 Pfungstadt 160,000 9
14 1974 Fritzlar 230,000 9
15 1975 Wetzlar 370,000 9
16 1976 Bensheim 345,000 9
17 1977 Dreieich 450,000 9
18 1978 Hofgeismar 300,000 9
19 1979 Friedberg 350,000 9
20 1980 Grünberg 275,000 9
21 1981 Bürstadt 300,000 9
22 1982 Wächtersbach 300,000 8
23 1983 Lauterbach 300,000 9
24 1984 Lampertheim 400,000 9
25 1985 Alsfeld 400,000 9
26 1986 Herborn 350,000 9
27 1987 Melsungen 400,000 9
28 1988 Hofheim 450,000 6
29 1989 Frankenberg 480,000 9
30 1990 Fulda 700,000 10
31 1991 Lorsch 580,000 10
32 1992 Wolfhagen 680,000 10
33 1993 Lich 860,000 10
34 1994 Groß-Gerau 680,000 10
35 1995 Schwalmstadt 760,000 10
36 1996 Gelnhausen 660,000 10
37 1997 Korbach 700,000 10
38 1998 Erbach 520,000 10
39 1999 Baunatal 1,060,000 10
40 2000 Hünfeld 710,000 10
41 2001 Dietzenbach 1,100,000 10
42 2002 Idstein 925,000 10
43 2003 Bad Arolsen 780,000 10
44 2004 Heppenheim 915,000 10
45 2005 Weilburg 840,000 10
46 2006 Hessisch Lichtenau 580,000 10
47 2007 Butzbach 1,100,000 10
48 2008 Homberg (Efze) 810,000 10
49 2009 Langenselbold 1,000,000 10
50 2010 Stadtallendorf 1,100,000 10
51 2011 Oberursel (Taunus) 1,400,000 10
52 2012 Wetzlar 1,215,000 10
53 2013 Kassel 1,830,000 10
54 2014 Bensheim 1,325,000 10
55 2015 Hofgeismar 750,000 10
56 2016 Herborn 940,000[5] 10

Planned locations[edit]

No. Year Location
57. 2017 Rüsselsheim

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Maximilian Kutzner. "Die Geschichte des Hessentags" (in German). Universität Gießen. Retrieved 15 June 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c "Die Geschichte des Hessentages" (in German). Hesse. Retrieved 15 June 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Wetzlar macht sich bereit: Hessentag: 1.000 Events in zehn Tagen" (in German). Hessischer Rundfunk. Archived from the original on 8 September 2012. Retrieved 18 May 2012. 
  4. ^ "Hessentag endet mit Traditionen und Trachten – 1,2 Millionen Besucher" (in German). echo-online.de. 10 June 2012. Retrieved 14 June 2012. 
  5. ^ "Hessentag in Herborn" (in German). hessentag2016.de. 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 

External links[edit]