Springfest bringing the German touch to Towson again

A weekend of music, beer, sausages and schnitzel

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April 21, 2005|By Annie Linskey | Annie Linskey,SUN STAFF

The Baltimore Kickers, one of the many German heritage clubs in town, say they're bringing a piece of their dear old Vaterland to Towson this weekend.

The second annual German-American Springfest will feature oompah bands, frothy German beer and plates full of sausages and schnitzel. German enthusiasts will don lederhosen and dance the polka. Festivities run 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday at Towson Courthouse Square. Admission is $3.

"It is like getting a piece of Germany without airfare," said Cecilia League, who is helping to organize the festival.

Much of the food at the festival will be made from scratch by club members. "We start cooking a week before the event," said League.

Those who attend can munch on dumplings, sauerkraut, potato dumplings, sweet and sour red cabbage and goulash. German meats will include bratwurst (a mild pork and beef sausage), Bauerwurst (a spicy beef sausage), sauerbraten (marinated beef that is roasted and sliced) and pork schnitzel (sliced, breaded and deep-fried meat).

Traditional American hotdogs will be on sale for children. (Desserts will include rich chocolate cakes, also popular with children.)

The soundtrack will be provided by German and American bands.

"People do enjoy the traditional music; they like tapping their feet and drinking a beer," said League.

The festival is meant to remind the younger generation about traditions from the old country. "These young people, they hear about German heritage, but they don't have a chance to see it or participate in it," said Elli Hein, who became a member of the club in 1957.

The Baltimore Kickers was founded in 1953.

Originally it was just a soccer club - but as time passed, members expanded the group's purpose. Now, it provides free German lessons and organizes low-fare trips to Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

"We have members from 19 years old to 80," said League. "They are all interested in preserving German heritage, at least the good parts."

The festival will be at Towson Courthouse Square, 400 Washington Ave. in Towson. The festival is 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $3 a person.

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