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Hermann Hill Newsletter

Hermann Hill Vineyard & Inn

 February 2006 Newsletter

To our Guests & Friends,
It seems "Old Man Winter" has decided not to show up in Hermann this year, or perhaps he's just postponing his visit. The warmer than usual weather has encouraged folks to work and play outdoors in recent weeks. At the city park,* walkers can be seen circling the half-mile course, while some are following our three-mile walk route. Golfers are out on the local links, and many of the citywide construction projects are on, or ahead of, schedule.

Work on the new Senator Christopher S. Bond Bridge continues round the clock. To view its progress visit Another bridge project is underway on Highway 100 on the eastern edge of town near Hermannhof Winery en route to Hermann Hill Village. And progress is being made on the new band shell on Gutenburg Street.

This also is the time of year when many of the 2006 events are being planned. Nary a month goes by when something special isn't happening in Hermann. Check out the local calendar for upcoming events. Following are two events scheduled in February that are worth noting.

(You will notice an asterisk (*) throughout the newsletter. This indicates a reference to Hermann Hill's Three-Mile Walk. Information about the walk is on our web site.)

The Fasching tradition continues
On the evening of February 18, the place to be is the Festhalle* for the Fasching Ball. Hermannhof Winery resurrected this traditional Hermann-German celebration three years ago.
Fasching is a German festival of pagan origin, whose original purpose was to drive out the evil ghosts of winter and to greet the long-awaited spring. The Fasching celebration officially began on the 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour of the day, when a Fasching king and queen were chosen. The celebration then died down until the Christmas holiday was over, or about January 10. From then until Ash Wednesday, it was a time for the rigorous pursuit of fun and frolic. The royal Fasching couple would attend three or four balls per night that lasted until morning. Other participants would attend three or four parties a week. It was not unusual for a couple to go deep in debt, and even visit the pawnbroker, to have enough cash for a good time at Fasching.

The Four Aces and a Joker were
among the Fasching Ball revelers several years ago.

On Rosenmontag, the Monday before Ash Wednesday, and of course on Faschingsdiestag, Shrove Tuesday, all businesses and schools would close to allow everyone to participate in the merriment. On Tuesday at midnight, everything came to an immediate halt at the traditional Kehraus dance, the clean-out dance.

The Hermann tradition of Faschnacht was celebrated in a very similar manner. However, the celebration was mostly confined to Shrove Tuesday, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. On Shrove Tuesday, the small children would carry a sack from door to door calling out, "Fettkuchle, fettkuchle." Fettkuchle is the German word meaning fried doughnuts. The women of the households would make fettkuchle or other fried pastries and put them in the children's sacks when they arrived at different houses throughout town.

Everyone would have large, private dinners with a huge assortment of meats, and there was much drinking of beer and wine. The children and their parents donned their costumes and masks, and all would attend the masked ball, which ended at midnight. The children danced folk dances until about 9 p.m., and from 9 until midnight the adults danced. The masked ball originally was held at the Concert Hall* on First Street.

The tradition in the neighboring town of Rhineland was to begin celebrating in the fall at butchering time. While making sausage for their families, a special recipe of sausage was put aside for the Sausage Ball on Shrove Tuesday. The Wurstjaegers ("Sausage Hunters") would collect up all the sausages, and a large meal was prepared using the sausages. Children and adults wore their costumes and masks to the ball. The Wurstjaegers started the ball with the Sausage Dance, with German dances continuing until midnight. At the strike of 12, the party was over.

Hermann's upcoming event will include traditional dances by the Rhineland Wurstjaegers. Costumed revelers will then dance to the '50s and '60s music of Plato and the Philosophers. There will be a costume contest, and a king and queen will be crowned. However, costumes are not required to participate in the fun. Food, beer and wine will be served. Hours are 8-11 p.m.

Tickets for the event are $12.50 per person and can be purchased at Hermannhof Winery, or by calling 1-800-393-0100.

Local wineries offer tasteful travels in wine country
The Hermann Wine Trail vintners are sponsoring another wine and food pairing event. Chocolate is the main ingredient on the Chocolate Wine Trail scheduled for February 18-19. Vintners at the seven Hermann area wineries are creating recipes made with "the food of love" to pair with their award-winning wines.

Adam Puchta Winery will pair its Berry Black wine with Blackberry Chocolate Surprise, while the folks at Bias Winery will offer Sweet Abrosia with Brownie Cheesecake drizzled with chocolate. A Decadent Chocolate Sheet Cake drizzled with white mocha chocolate will be served up at Bommarito Winery, which will be paired with Almond Tree Blush.

Vignoles is the wine that will be served along with Vignoles Truffles at Hermannhof Winery, and OakGlenn Winery is pairing Red Port with Fruit a la Chocolate. Chocolate Pasta on a pillow of whipped cream and drizzled with Norton Berry Sauce will be paired with Gabrielle's Blush at Robller Winery, while Stone Hill Winery* serves up a Flourless Chocolate Cake with raspberry drizzle to serve with its Port.

Participants in the 2005 Chocolate Wine Trail event line up for cake and port wine in the Hermannhof Winery cellars.

Tickets for the Chocolate Wine Trail are $15 per person and must be purchased in advance. Make your reservation early as last year's event was sold out. Tickets may be purchased online at, or from the Hermann Welcome Center, 800-932-8687.

The event will be held regardless of weather from 10-5 Saturday and 11-5 Sunday. Other 2006 events sponsored by the Hermann Wine Trail vintners are scheduled for July 29-30 (Very Berry Wine Trail) and November 18-19 (Holiday Fare Wine Trail). Information is available online at


Historic Hermann fund raiser: "Experience the Unexpected"
"Experience the Unexpected", a major fund-raising effort, is underway to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the historic German School and the 50th anniversary of the German School Museum,* which is operated by Historic Hermann, Inc. Unique packages featuring one-of-a-kind experiences are being auctioned to help support several restoration and improvement projects and to promote Hermann's uniqueness. Packages will be open for bidding from Feb. 1 through April 22. The celebration will culminate with a reception and live auction of additional offerings at the Hermannhof Winery Festhalle* on April 29 at 6 p.m.

Historic Hermann, Inc., was incorporated on January 1, 1953. Its charter stated that Historic Hermann would extend appreciation of the area's German heritage through an annual Maifest celebration; provide research and publications regarding local history, arts, crafts, culture, and education; maintain a museum for receiving and preserving personal property of historic value; foster patriotism; and promote the general welfare and educational facilities of the area.

Funds from the auction are earmarked to restore and preserve the museum, its collections, and the grounds surrounding the building, to create a park in the downtown historic district, and to rebuild the Heckman Steamboat Memorial* at First and Market streets at the south end of the new bridge.

To see a detailed listing of the packages being auctioned off, which includes a stay at Hermann Hill, and to bid online, click For more information about Historic Hermann, click

The German School will benefit from Historic Hermann's fund-raising event.


Hermann Hill Village update

Heavy equipment used to
install utilities to
Hermann Hill Village.

With great January weather, progress is apparent at Hermann Hill Village. The exterior stucco and stone on the first five cottages is now complete. Cottage #2 has drywall, and Cottages 1, 3 and 4 have interior framing. We also installed the first deck railing system and side privacy walls on Cottage #1. As the accompanying picture indicates, utilities are being connected to the cottages so we hope to be using the furnaces shortly.

To view more photos of our progress, click on the Hermann Hill Village page.

Hermann Hill Village

March newsletter: Hermann: Missouri's Wurst Capital

Hermann Hill Vineyard and Inn
711 Wein Street - P.O. Box 555 - Hermann, Missouri (MO) 65041
Phone: (573) 486-HILL (573-486-4455)  |  Fax: (573) 486-53733
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