The world’s largest authentic German Christmas market to be staged outside Germany or Austria will once again be returning to Birmingham this year with more than 90 festive stalls set to bring a truly festive experience to the city centre.
Now in its seventh year the Frankfurt Market, is the centrepiece of the city’s annual Christmas events calendar, and is expected to attract more than two million visitors to the city during its six-week run.
As well as offering the usual array of traditional handmade toys, Christmas decorations, beautiful jewellery, craft goods and fairground rides, this year’s event will for the first time see unique German wines, not available in the UK, on offer.
Visitors will also able to enjoy the delights of German mulled wine (Glühwein), grilled sausages, vegetarian food, pretzels, German beer, and for those with a sweet tooth, gingerbread, crepes and marzipan sweets.
At the heart of the market in Victoria Square, will be a traditional bandstand where musicians will perform every lunchtime and evening. Groups of local carol singers and school children will also be staging special performances throughout the festive period.
Mike Whitby, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “Over recent years our German Market has established a much deserved reputation as one of the Europe’s premier Christmas events. We are delighted to welcome visitors from accross the United Kingdom and Europe to visit what is a growing tourist attraction.
As well as providing a major boost to the local economy, the market enhances the profile and reputation of Birmingham, and demonstrates our unrivalled expertise in successfuly organising and hosting major events.
I'm sure the market will be a great success and once again provide Birmingham with an iconic centre piece to its Christmas celebrations”
Councillor Ray Hassell, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Sport and Culture, said: “The market will once again be one of the highlights of a magical programme of Christmas activities which will provide fun and excitement for all the family.
From carols to Christmas lights, open-air ice skating to festive shopping, Birmingham will be the place to go for anyone wanting to get into the festive spirit.”
This year the market will be treated to a very special VIP opening when former Eurovision Song Contest winner and German-language singing superstar Vicky Leandros flies into Birmingham on Thursday 15th November.
Greek born Leandros, who performs in eight different languages, is one of Germany’s most established singer/song writers and has sold more than 40 million records world-wide.
With hundreds of coach parties regularly visiting the market from as far a field as Durham, Torquay, Ipswich and Cardiff the council has joined forces with the City Centre Partnership’s street wardens to offer a free 'meet and greet' service to pre-booked parties.
School activity packs will also be available at www.bgfl.org.uk.
Birmingham’s twinning with Frankfurt is one of the city’s longest established, now over 40 years. The partnership is celebrated every year by a range of economic, political and cultural events and exchanges involving schools, business, and community groups.
The market will run from 13th November - 23rd December, open 10.00am - 9.00pm daily. For more information go to www.birmingham.gov.uk/frankfurtmarket.
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13.11. - 23.12.2008
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