It is serious fun!
Well, some people take it very serious – but for most it is meant to be fun. What am I talking about? Carnival, or Mardi Gras – as we now often call it, of course.
In the last issue I reported on the opening and coronation of the new "Royals" in Burlington – yes, way before the traditional 11th of November. But I have since been informed that several years ago the BDKK tabled a resolution permitting events prior to the traditional date, when there are 5 Saturdays in November. I hope my source is correct!
Practically everybody who is anybody in carnival was present. If I list them all here – to flatter their ego – this report would be too long. However, I have to mention the 1.KG Ascendia and the new "Royals" His Foolishness Prince Martin I. and her Loveliness Princess Marta I., and not to forget, Prince Richard and Princess Kerstin from Kitchener.
And then there was Jazmin (now eight years old) in her new uniform, and her brother Maximillian, as two of the youngest decibels of Mardi Gras. The Neudorff’s unsuccessfully tried to keep Jazmin off the dance floor.
And then there was carnival in a way that one rarely finds any more, at the third "Kappenabend" of the GKG Narrhalla ‘58 in Hamilton. Almost unstructured and devoid of serious protocol it was the time to really let one’s hair down. The dress code was "Räuberzivil" – more or less – plus any headgear you choose. If you didn’t have a hat, one was provided free.
Entertainment? By the people – for the people. Jokes galore, Schunkelmusik – no dance floor to speak of – good food and drink, provided by Paul and Heidi Frank’s restaurant, and reasonably priced. Some CDs were available with carnival music from Cologne that was greatly appreciated and accompanied by the members from the old carnival hot spots in Germany. It was reminiscent of carnival in the old days – just "Spaß an der Freud"!
Reigning royalty was also present: Prince Martin – in full splendour, with "Hofstaat", but without his lovely, teenage princess. Another royal couple present was Prince Richard woth Princess Kerstin from Kitchener.
The Germania Choir had been invited to the event, but didn’t have to sing, for a change, just enjoy the festivities. I wish that there would be more events of this nature staged by the carnival societies.
VIVA LAS VEGAS…in Kitchener…
Einmarsch promptly at 8:11 of the host society and visiting societies including reigning "Royals": Kitchener’s Prince Richard I. and her Loveliness Princess Kerstin, as well as Hamilton’s foolish ruler Prince Martin I. and his princess Marta I. KG Downriver, Detroit send their delegates Timothy and Karen Willard. Always welcome guests!
No entertainment was offered by the Narrenzunft itself this time – I guess the "Männerbalett" is no longer as nimble as before – plus the traditional "Büttenredner (in) is doing duty as princess with the "KSG Stromberger Karneval Deutschland" as Prinzessin Karin I. von Übersee – with Prinz Walter I. von Mine de Bocki, as her consort. Instead the Narrenzunft hired outside help.
Please welcome the "Vegas Shows International"!
This small group entertained with samples of international show personalities such as Tina Turner, Benny Hill, Dolly Parton – just to mention a few. Although it hadn’t anything to do with carnival, it was still good entertainment and as such appreciated by the audience. It was professionally staged and a feast for eyes and ears, one of the guests remarked, especially when Prince Richard participated a in a few instances.
Maybe entertainment of this sort is the answer to drawing a larger - and also a younger -crowd to these carnival functions.
The Las Vegas show was staged in two sections with Joe Lindlau playing his wonderful tunes – including some of the old "Kölsche" specials – to keep the guests on the dance floor, between the two sets and whenever possible. Many of them – when not dancing – were fraternizing at the bar, a welcome opportunity to meet old and new friends.
One of the highlights of this evening was the kidnapping of the "Prince".
Here is David Simon’s report of the event:
"Part of the fun and tradition of Karneval is of course the Prinzen couples. To be a Prinz Karneval is great fun and a great honour. Like everything in Karneval, there are rules to the fun. Rule number one is the Prince is the head of state in Karneval and carries the highest position, and as such is very valuable. It is a fun tradition in Karneval to ‘kidnap’ the Prince. This is a long-standing tradition in Germany and has happened in Canada previously as well. In Kitchener, Narrhalla president Hugh Turner and Elferrats president (David Simon) ‘kidnapped’ Prinz Martin I. of Hamilton and held him for ransom.
They escorted him out of the Concordia Club and down to Harry’s Grill in downtown Kitchener. Prince Martin I. and his two ‘kidnappers’ had a fun time at Harry’s, which happens to be a karaoke bar, and yes it was karaoke night!
It took 3 phone calls to the Concordia Club and 3 rounds of drinks for the Prince’s Hofmarschall to come to the ‘rescue’. The ‘ransom’ of the bar tab – which is small compared to German ransoms – remains unpaid.
I must add that even though Prinz Martin was having a great time, the Hofmarschall and his group overreacted to the taking of the Prince. Tempers flared as the search for the Prince went on, the group had ‘lost’ their Prince and they were not finding it funny. Hugh and I would have never ‘kidnapped’ the Prince, if they didn’t know positively that both Prince Martin I. and his Hofmarschall understood fully the fun of taking a Prince Karneval."
Well, they capture City Halls, Mayors and Councilmen in carnival – why not the Prince?
For some real hilarity they should’ve taken Prinz Richard along as well!
I am glad to learn that some people are still taking their fun ‘seriously’!
Alaaf and Helau
This was also the evening when the Burgenländer Club hosted its 25th "Martini Dance" in the St. Peter & Paul hall in Scarborough. This is Oskar Stubit’s report of the event:
"The friendly atmosphere commenced with a warm greeting by the president upon entering the hall and continued throughout the evening.
The entertainment was provided by the Burgenland Duo of Sepp and Seif (Joseph & Stephan) brought all the way from the "Old Homeland" for the occasion. The patrons enjoyed every old and well-remembered tune and every new song and filled the dance floor until the closing hour.
Over 400 Tombola prizes filled 4 tables and there were a number of quality door prizes waiting for the draw. The Grand Door Prize of 2 free airline tickets Toronto-Vienna and return, donated by Austrian Airlines, were presented by Mr. Don McWilliam, Manager Canada, to the winner John Savel of Scarborough.
The evening was well organized as usual and simply delightful and all are looking forward to next year’s Martini Dance".
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