Another successful Waldfest

The last weekend of the summer holidays traditionally sees the “Waldfest” take place in an area of the woods in Oberursel known as the “Schulwald”.

There was even cause for a small celebration this year, as Hochtaunuskreis District Councillor Uwe Kraft (CDU) explained to the guests.  20 years ago, it was realised that there were 45 different types of tree growing within a relatively small space.  The Schulwald came into being out in order to allow the schools in the town access to the area, and even then one of the factors considered was that it should not burden the town’s finances.

To make sure that didn’t happen, a supporters’ charity (“Förderverein”) was set up and their chairman Dieter Rosentreter even travelled up from Bavaria for the event on Saturday.  As he greeted the guests, he emphasised that the day is held for the children who come.

The supporters' charity were in charge of the catering at the Waldfest in the Schulwald

The supporters’ charity members were in charge of the catering at the Waldfest in the Schulwald

The children had a wide choice of things to do and experience, coming into contact with nature at the same time.  They could make things out of pieces of wood or even whittle away at pieces on the work bench, like Nalu (5) and Gabriel (5) – both pictured below – did, with Nalu making an arrow and Gabriel a sword.  Children who preferred to paint could do so on the wooden “hares”.

Also on offer were chances to learn more about bees, smell and taste plants, a tactile experience and observe what was going on in the pond.  Some lucky children were even able to pan for gold and take home anything they found, and through the afternoon a number of walks through the woods were held.

Gabriel and Nalu in the carpentry area

Gabriel and Nalu in the carpentry area

Also taking place at the pond was a demonstration of hunting dogs, and the hunting horn group from Ober-Erlenbach held a concert in front of the historic saw.

The saw itself could be viewed, but it was not actually working.  An arson attack on 19th November, 2013, meant that the building housing it had to be re-built and the spare parts of the saw have to be made by hand.  They are just not available to purchase anywhere, Dieter Rosentreter explained.

With the sun shining, the places in the shade were much sought after – whether at the activities or at the salad and cake stands.  All the same, a number of visitors where at the Schulwald or at least the Waldfest for the first time.

For Dieter Rosentreter, one of the purposes of the afternoon is to increase the awareness of the project and not primarily to finance it, although donations are welcome.  But it is not just money that is welcome, volunteers are needed each Tuesday during term time between 3pm and 5pm to maintain the buildings and care for the wood, giving adults a chance to spend time in this fascinating part of the town as well.

This article appeared in German on 11th September, 2014 in the Oberurseler Woche.


About Graham Tappenden

Graham Tappenden is a British ex-pat who first came to Oberursel in 1993 and returned with his family to live there in 2003. He has been writing for since 2006. When not writing blog posts or freelancing for the Oberurseler Woche he works as a self-employed IT consultant solving computer problems and designing websites. In 2016 he gained German citizenship.

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