Heinerfest, Darmstadt

Heinerfest

Heinerfest, Darmstadt

 

For the people in Darmstadt, the Heinerfest is nothing new. Over the years, Heinerfest has become synonymous with festivities and merriment and is the most awaited festival in summer. During the 1st week of July, people in and around Darmstadt come in multitudes to the city center to enjoy and participate in the celebrations. But one may wonder why this festival is celebrated. 

Here is a brief history:

Why is Heinerfest celebrated? 

The story of the Heinerfest goes like this:

In 1950 – six years after the devastating bombing raid on Darmstadt, during the 2nd world war, the city was still in rubbles. The devastation all around them made the people sad and depressed. At this time, a proposal for a festival was made. The thought behind it was that a festival would bring the much-needed cheer, joy, and happiness that the people had been deprived of for many years. An appeal was made to the public to vote for a name for this festival. With the majority voting for the name ‘‘Heinerfest,” a new festival was born.

The first Heinerfest, in the year 1951, was about remembrance and mourning. But it also brought the great joy of finally being able to come together and celebrate again. It started on a Friday evening with a concert in the Darmstadt market area, which created a festive atmosphere and marked the beginning of more festivities in the days to come. 

Do check out the photos from all the previous Heinerfests here

The festival’s highlight was the arrival of the people from Darmstadt who had been evacuated during the war. On Heinerfestmontag, they were welcomed. Each of the 900 evacuees received four vouchers worth DM 0.50 each, which could be handed in anywhere on the festival site – a forerunner of today’s Heinerfest tokens. 

Since then, the Heinerfest has been celebrated in Darmstadt every year around the same time. For five successive days, the mood is joy and merriment, with people from in and around Darmstadt flocking to the city center to participate in the celebrations. On the Heinerfest days, the city center transforms into a fairground, the roads become pedestrian zones, and open spaces give way to food and game stalls.

 

What can one expect at the  Heinerfest?

 

Rides

There are plenty of rides for the young & the old; for the fun-loving & the daring ones. Some of the popular ones this year in 2022 have been:

 

Heinerfest
The Giant Wheel
Heinerfest
Break Dancer
Heinerfest
Apollo 13
Heinerfest
Karrussel
Heinerfest
Nessy
Heinerfest
Wellenflieger
Heinerfest
Top Spin
Heinerfest
Rio Rapido

Game and Food Stalls

Game stalls ranging from shooting balloons, darts, and car racing keep alternating with food stalls offering a wide range of food and drinks line the streets. 

 

Heinerfest
A packed Beergarten
Heinerfest
Eat outs at Friedenplatz 
Heinerfest
Huge Crowds on the streets
Heinerfest
Fun games for children and adults
Heinerfest
Food and Game stalls
Heinerfest
Yet another game stall
 

Performances

Performances by groups belonging to different clubs ( die Vereine ) attract huge crowds. Some of the popular ones this year were Circus Waldoni and Bollywood dance by the students of TU.

 

Heinerfest
Performace by ‘Circus Waldoni’ at Luisenplatz
Heinerfest
Performace by ‘Circus Waldoni’ at Luisenplatz
Heinerfest
Bollywood Dance by the students of TU at Friedenplatz
Heinerfest
Bollywood Dance by the students of TU at Friedenplatz

In addition, there are activities for small kids like street performances and magic shows. For families, senior citizens as well as youngsters, there are many programs like performances by live bands in Herrngarten, a Cycling tour by the Darmstadt Greeters, free guided tours, and live musical performances in the Schlossgraben, and much more to entertain and engage.

 

Also, access to the viewing platform in Ludwigs Monument in Luisenplatz and Der Weiße Turm are possible during Heinerfest.

 

Information worth obtaining before you plan a visit:

 

-All the information related to the Heinerfest can be obtained from their official website:

https://www.darmstaedterheinerfest.de/

 

-The ‘Program’ page can help you plan your visit. It shows all the activities along with their dates and timings.

https://www.darmstaedterheinerfest.de/programm/

 

-Also, do consider buying the Heiner Taler, through which you can save 1 Euro for every 10 Euros that you spend at the fest. Details are available here:

https://www.darmstaedterheinerfest.de/infos/heinerfest-taler/

 

– It is best to reach the city center using public transport as finding a car parking space can become a nightmare. Consider buying the RMV Heinerfest ticket, in which you can pay once and travel all 5 days. The stalls are put up in areas around Luisenplatz, Karolinenplatz, Friedenplatz, Marktplatz, and along the road that leads to the Woog. It is best to alight at Luisenplatz or Schloss stop.

 

-The Heinerfest is also a wonderful opportunity to take regional wines. The wine producers from around Darmstadt bring their special wines, which can be enjoyed by the visitors. For details about the wine produced and to book a table, you can go to the following link:

https://www.darmstaedterheinerfest.de/infos/kontakte-fuer-reservierungen/

 

– If interested, you can also become a part of the Förderverein ( The club) that manages and organizes the fest. The details are available here: 

https://www.darmstaedterheinerfest.de/foerderverein/

 

With over 700,000 people visiting Darmstadt, the Heinerfest is a huge success and very popular not just amongst people in Darmstadt but also among people from other parts of the country.

To read about interesting places and events in Darmstadt, click here.
 

 

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