Last night marked the formal kickoff for the 2015 Jasper Strassenfest.
The 37th edition of the fest officially got underway at 6 o’clock last night with the Opening Ceremonies, though there were other events throughout the day. Crowds began filing in at around 5 o’clock last night with the opening of the food booths on the downtown square.
Mayor Terry Seitz once again delivered this year’s Burgermeister proclamation:
Of course, this year’s Strassenfest has special meaning. Seitz was joined on stage last night by 36 guests from Jasper’s sister city of Pfaffenwieler, Germany. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the ‘Sister Cities’ partnership between the two cities.
The Pfaffenweiler contingent was led by mayor Deiter Hahn. Hahn is also serving as the Burgermeister this year.
As part of the partnership, the visits take place every 5 years with representatives of each city visiting the other city’s major festival. Most recently, group from Jasper traveled to Pfaffenwieler back in 2010 to celebrate the partnership’s 25th anniversary and Seitz visited Pfaffenwieler last summer.
Seitz says this year’s Strassenfest will be a memorable one for both cities:
Other officials on hand last night included former Jasper mayor Fritz Gutgsell, who led the partnership effort on Jasper’s behalf along with representatives from the Jasper Partnership Commission. Though the Strassenfest is celebrating the first 30 years of the partnership, officials in both communities already have their eyes on the future:
The Pfaffenweiler group will be staying in Jasper through August 9th. They will tour southern Indiana and take part in several events during their stay.
In addition to the celebration of sister cities, the opening ceremonies included a welcome from this year’s Miss Strassenfest Camille Ruff:
Of course, the Strassenfest will continue through Sunday. Other notable events include the Talentspiel (hosted by 18 WJTS), rides on the Spirit of Jasper train and the Strassenfest parade. The parade will get underway at 1 o’clock Sunday afternoon.
The 37th Strassenfest concludes with a fireworks show Sunday night at 10 o’clock.