Beelitz, 1/6/2014 - Never before has the centre of Beelitz seen such crowds of people, with some 30,000 visitors celebrating the Asparagus Festival and dancing to music by stars such as Chris Roberts, Anna-Maria Zimmermann and Bernhard Brink on the weekend. The highlights also included the traditional asparagus procession on the Sunday, when onlookers lined the streets. Over 40 of the city’s businesses, associations, districts and institutions were on display, accompanied by three fanfares.
“Driving through the city, it was just a sea of people”, said overwhelmed mayor Bernhard Knuth after the procession. “It’s incredible what we’ve been able to put together here in Beelitz”, he added.
Apart from the bright sunshine and fresh asparagus served at the historic taverns, guests were also attracted by the exciting entertainment programme. Rock band “High Voltage” kicked things off on the main stage on the Friday evening, while Saturday saw a full day of shows and music, hosted by Dagmar Frederic. In the evening, it was time to travel back to the 80s with the Uckermärkische Bühnen Schwedt “Life is live” rock revue, after which pop star Anna-Maria Zimmermann performed in front of several thousand fans.
Sunday’s Antenne Brandenburg party involved a reunion with Chris Roberts – literally, for the pop star recognised many of his long-time fans in the crowed and greeted them personally. He has been performing on stage for well over 40 years – an achievement he alludes to self-mockingly: “I won’t say how old I am, otherwise you’ll start singing ‘Du kannst nicht immer 70 sein’ (‘You can’t always be 70’, a play on words based on his actual song, whose title translates to ‘You can’t always be 17’)”. Bernhard Brink also demonstrated his excellent showmanship, getting the people rocking and laughing.
And during all of this, the old-town playground by the Nieplitz River was taken over by countless little tots romping around the monkey bars, storming the games bus and tinkering around with staff from the Beelitz Family Centre. They were also excited to meet Spargelina, the new girlfriend of popular mascot Spargelino, who was presented to the public for the first time, and instantly captured the youngsters’ hearts as she strolled through the streets with her other half.
The asparagus farmers, who were particularly involved in this year’s festival, were also in the mood to celebrate. The early start to the season at the end of March and a not-too-dry winter made for good harvests. The Werderaner Wachtelberg was also represented at the church square.
Despite the massive crush of people in Beelitz’s old town, the entire weekend remained a peaceful one, and the police did not report a single incident. This also indicates that the Asparagus Festival appeals to the right mix, with young people, seniors and families all taking to the streets and sharing their passion for music, good times and the asparagus-growing town of Beelitz.