Nicely unstructured and informal at the Hansa Haus in Brampton. The "Schlachtplatte" consisting of a very tasty liver sausage and blood sausage – standards at this type of event – plus a large piece of "Kasseler", marinated pork, and sauerkraut with mashed potatoes. What a feast!
No table service this time, everyone picked up his or her meal at the counter, whenever they felt like it and depending on their arrivals. It all started at 6:00 p.m. and since not everyone came at the same time, nobody had to stand and wait in line very long at the food counter.
Coffee and cakes – a fabulous "Bienenstich" and a cherry cake – all baked by Vlasta at the club – rounded out the food offerings.
The bar was kept busy serving the beloved German beers (Warsteiner & Hacker Pschorr) and a lot of the guests asked for the new "Paulaner" wheat beer that gives you such a nice, long-lasting head of foam when you pour it into your glass, and wonderfully complements the meat dish at this dinner.
A number of honoured guest were in attendance this evening also. Dr. Ulrich Hochschild, German Consul General, Gerry Meinzer – who once ran for Mayor of Toronto, as most of you will remember - and a number of members of the Brandt family with Otto Rosenmeier and Ida Brandt representing as heads of the family. Since Brand Meat is the major supplier of the club, the food is always of the highest quality.
After everyone had eaten and before the "Golden Keys" started to play for the general dance, the Volkstanzgruppe "Almrausch" performed a number of traditional folk dances that were very well received by the audience.
That is not the criteria by which the Youth Group of the Danube Swabian Club chooses the annual "Miss Danube".
Although this year they could have asked the mirror and were told to select Rebecca Szauter as one of the fairest to be the next reigning "Miss" or Princess. But the outgoing Princess, Kristy Hudson explained it in her opening address when she welcomed the many guests that had chosen to attend this gala function. Every year the youth group has an opportunity to choose a girl the Members feel will best represent them and the Toronto Danube Swabians for the coming year.
She also mentioned that the choice is never an easy one to make and that this year is no exception. "All the girls in the youth group are princesses and all the boys are princes", and this and every year is a special evening for the group and they very much appreciate the continual support from the club. She said "We love being here, it is our second home and we have all of you as our family".
Her sister Nicole, the president of the youth group thanked all for coming, and echoed Kristy’s sentiments. "We have a very busy year ahead of us and hope to see many of you at our up and coming events throughout the year!"
Kristy reminisced about the past year and realised that picking out the best time was hard to do but she listed some of the functions she attended: Kindertrachtenfest, Mother’s Day, Landestrachtenfest, Kirchweihfest, Oktoberfest (Yellow shooters anyone?), Jugendtreffen at Park Waldheim, Traubenfest (Going to jail, seeing a judge, stealing onions (?) and other antics), Exhibition and German Day (and roller coaster late at night), Caravan and her mini-mayor Jacob Turi (a little nervous with the City-TV interview – but a great party after!), and last but not least "Cincinnati" and the "Tag der Donauschwaben".
She also thanked her sponsors, Mr. And Mrs Schinagl, who sponsor the Princess every year, the Baumanns, her sister Nikky and many others – too numerous to mention here.
The Youth Group had marched into the hall – a festive sight – 15 lovelies in breath-taking evening gowns and 13 festively attired male escorts. After a walk around the dance floor they all lined up in front of the stage.
After Kristy’s and Nicole’s addresses, Tony Baumann, the club’s president started the process that everyone had been holding their breath for. "The envelope, please"…and the winner is: Runner up: Rachel Seilern - whose duty it is to help and take the place of the reigning princess if she should be unable to attend and now – you could hear a pin drop in the hall – the new – more pregnant pauses – ‘Miss Danube’ and the new princess… Rebecca Szauter!!!
This year with a new banner reading "Fred Wagner Dance Competition" over the stage, honouring the long-time efforts of the BDKK president Fred Wagner. – Fred who unfortunately passed away recently, had always been recognized as one of the beloved mentors of the dance guards and one of the driving forces behind the "Manöver Ball" dance competitions.
Not represented this year was the Narrhalla ’58 from Hamilton.
"Miss Hospitality": – voted for by the girls – Tania Anger, Londoner Funken Rot-Weiss. The Londoner Funken only marched in but did not compete, since only 5 girls could attend.
"Free Style Funkenmariechen": Narragonia Brantford, (plus Wandertrophy) followed by Narrenzunft Kitchener and Blau-Weiss Sarnia.
"Originality": Narragonia Brantford.
"Show Dance": Narragonia Brantford, (plus Wandertrophy) with their Western Saloon and Can-Can combo, followed by the Treue Husaren Mississauga in 2nd place and Narrenzunft Kitchener in 3rd place.
"Garde Dance": Narragonia Brantford, (plus Wandertrophy), followed by Blau-Weiss Sarnia and Narrenzunft Kitchener.
"Tanzmariechen Solo": Blau-Weiss Sarnia got to the first spot (plus Wandertrophy) followed by Narrenzunft Kitchener and last, but not least Narragonia Brantford (!) to everyone’s surprise.
The fifth group in the competition was the Loreley Oshawa – good show, but no cigars this time.
When the traditional "Silencio" was played at the end of the evening, it was played in honour of Fred Wagner. Needless to say, that not many eyes remained dry. We all miss you, Fred!
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