Saturday, September 24, 2011

Urban Forestry

Last night, Sara was out running some errands. Upon her return, which required a trip through Aachen's beautiful city center and Marktplatz, she exclaimed, "This city is so crazy! We turn our backs for one day and they cover the Marktplatz in wood chips and turn it into a forest!"

The International Year of Forests
So, we checked our trusty Aachen RSS feed (German only), which keeps us up to date on all the happenings in Aachen (which also explained why we weren't able to find the weekly market for the past three weeks). It turns out that 2011 is the Internationales Jahr der Wälder (International Year of Forests) and, to celebrate, Aachen is hosting a Waldfest (Forest Festival) today and tomorrow. What does one do at a Waldfest? Well...

One makes dioramas detailing the wildlife found in the Forest. (Each of the neighboring city/towns contributed a booth. I think this one was from Duisburg, but I could be wrong.)

One displays mushrooms and trees carved out of wood.

And, of course, one has a huge display of eagles.
I was quite surprised at how close we were to the eagles, and how big and truly powerful they look. Then they betrayed themselves by letting out a series of extraordinarily high-pitched screeches, much like seventh-grade girls.

Also, there was a log-cutting competition right in front of the 9th century Rathaus (town hall), with this massive chainsaw making short work of the log in just a few seconds:

For some reason, I like thinking about Charlemagne watching over the chainsaws from his carved throne on the city hall.

The whole purpose of this post is to show you how unbelievably cool Aachen is. So, when you plan your trip to visit us, check the Aachen RSS feed to see what surprises will await you!

(By the way, there are more pictures of the birds and the Waldfest on our Flickr site at Check it out!)


  1. Hey Ty and Sara
    Loved the blog entry. You two are so amazing! And Tyler, It is so great how well you blend in with the other cute, furry creatures in the picture.
    Love, Mom

  2. Mitchell here. THIS IS THE BEST POST TO DATE. (Admittedly hits my sweet spot.) Where there any logging sports? (Competitive chopping or sawing, log rolling, etc.) The eagle is also really cool.

  3. Oh! sad we missed this! It looked really cool!


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