I went into a flea market in Harlingen, Texas and asked if they had items they could not identify. A vendor took me back to her booth and showed me a shallow basket with about five medallions in it. I knew immediately what it was from my time in Germany. I searched through the basket and picked a medallion from 1976 the year I graduated from High School. I thought perhaps others would enjoy the history.
I first heard about these marches when it was Oktoberfest in Germany. The Oktoberfest will be taking place September 19 to October 4, 2015 starting in Munich, Germany. I’m not into fermented drinks, so I did not pay much attention to the other festivities surrounding this event. It was later that I was told that included in the Oktoberfest events were volksmarches.
A volksmarch or volkswalk is a noncompetitive, fitness walking 3.1 mile (5km) or 6.2 mile (10k) walk. It is on a pre-determined outdoor path or trail. It can also include bicycling, swimming, boating, cross-country skiing, or snowshoeing. It is not a pledge walk, it is not a race, it is a fun activity you do with a club, with your family, with your pet, or all by yourself. Volksmarching got its origins in Europe. Today there are thousands of volksport clubs around the world, allied in the International Volksport Federation the IVV.
The IVV began January 14, 1968 when a few walkers from Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Germany met in Lindau, Germany and decided to form the IVV.
You can get an award/medallion similar to the one pictured upon completion for $6.00. You get the award at the event and not at a later date if you have a current AVA/IW yearly permit. The medallion weighs 2 ounces, it has a safety pin and ribbon. The medallion tells the race length and where the event took place.
The medallion shown here was a 3.1 event in Wanderung, Germany in 1976. It was with a pet dog. It has a seal of an elf with Deschler Sein (Deschler is a family name which means bag maker) (Sein signifies identification number) and Deschler munchen (Munich) 90 on the back.
The Wanderung walk is quite well know walk. Its total ascent is 3809.0 ft, descent 3838.5 ft, max. elevation 1466.5 ft. and min. elevation is 479.0 ft. The complete path is 6.1 miles. You will see castles, the Rhein River, shopping district, little villages and forest. You can cruise back down the Rhein to your starting place.
More information on the Wunderung trail go to; www.sharemyroutes/Germany/Ith-Weserbergland/Ith-Wunderrung/details.aspx
After I discovered that Volksmarches were a part of Oktoberfest I have wanted to attend just to do the march. I did not have opportunity while I was in Germany. I have participated in Komen walks, Boonie Stomp walks and hiked several canyons. I would love to add a Volksmarch to my list.