Sandpaper beats soft soap at herzogenaurach folk festival custom

Sandpaper beats soft soap at herzogenaurach folk festival custom

It is not unusual for a tree to be erected at church fairs and folk festivals, which young people can then climb. At the first rough folk festival in herzogenaurach, held from 27. Until the 30. August 1910, the young people were able to demonstrate their skills on such a tree on the ansbacher.

At this first big folk festival in herzogenaurach in 1910, ten-year-old valentin zink was allowed to carry a plaque in the procession. Justina wirth, later married to welker and the mother of rudi welker, with her long blond hair was the ideal person to represent germania in the procession, as he could remember. The folk festival took place on the so-called geibbockswiese on ansbacher strabe, where an inn was built in the 1950s, which was later named "tiroler carried. This municipal meadow was allowed to be mowed by the keeper of the goat and the grass was used for fodder.

A tree from which the bark had been removed was placed in the square. A 3-mark piece, a so-called "preubentaler," was tied into a red handkerchief at the top of the tree.

To make matters even more difficult, the trunk had also been covered with soft soap. Numerous young people tried to climb it to get the handkerchief with the coin, but no one succeeded.

Ten-year-old valentin zink watched the scene intently, as he recalled in a conversation many years later. He was always sporty, with his cousins adolf and rudolf dassler and christoph zehlein he was active in the herzogenaurach gymnastics club.


As a clever man, he had a solution ready for the soft soap on the tree trunk. Valentin zink fixed sandpaper from his father’s carpenter’s workshop with "herlaf on arms and legs and climbed the tree this way.

At a height of about seven meters he stopped and pretended that he could not go on. But he reached the top of the tree at a height of about twelve meters and brought down the handkerchief with the teeth to much applause. He used the money to subscribe to a war bond in 1917 during the first world war.

Valentin zink (1900-1981) still remembers the festival on the geibbockswiese fondly, even in his old age. He learned the carpenter’s trade and served as a soldier in the first world war. Later he took over his father’s carpenter’s workshop and in retirement devoted himself to brand painting.

Valentin zink died only three months after his wife’s death on 17. July 1981 and was buried in the old cemetery in herzogenaurach. A wooden crucifix carved by him marks his grave not far from the priest’s tomb.

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