USAG Stuttgart Public Affairs
New Year’s Eve in Germany is a time to celebrate the start of a new year with fireworks, music, and family. Whether you want to party into the early hours of the morning or have a relaxed New Year’s with your family, events in Stuttgart have everything needed to ring in the New Year just like the Germans do.
In Germany, New Year’s Eve is called Silvester. During the day, the movie “Dinner for One,” will be broadcasted as it has every year since 1963. The 18-minute black-and-white comedy follows the life of Miss Sophie as she celebrates her 90th birthday. Due to her age, however, she has outlived all of her friends and tries to recreate her birthday dinner each year with her only remaining companion – her manservant James.
Also, people may participate in a tradition known as “Bleigiessen,” where lead is poured onto a spoon above a candle, and then tipped into a bowl filled with cold water. The lead solidifies and transforms into a random shape. Explanations of the various potential shapes come with the package and provide predictions of what’s ahead and coming in the New Year. The utensils for Bleigiessen all come in one package and can be purchased from most local department stores and supermarkets.
Another German New Year’s tradition that might be unknown to Americans is “Feuerzangenbowle,” a favorite also seen at Christmas markets. Feuerzangenbowle is a hot drink in which a rum-soaked sugar-loaf is set on fire and drips into mulled wine. The name translates to “fire-tong’s-punch.”
People come from all over the world to take part in the festivities held in downtown Stuttgart. In Germany, this time of year is the only time that fireworks can be purchased. Celebrators light up the sky in every neighborhood at the stroke of midnight, a truly unique experience to witness.
Here are just a few of the activities coming up to ring in 2017:
New Year’s Eve Party at the Kelley Club
Sing along to karaoke and dance the night away at the Kelley Club on Kelley Barracks from 8 p.m. – 1 a.m. Enjoy an all-you-can-eat buffet served from 8 – 11 p.m. including ham, chicken, a salad bar, vegetables, mashed potatoes, buttered rice, bread rolls, assorted fruits, cakes, puddings and yogurts. At the stroke of midnight attendees receive a free glass of champagne to celebrate the start of the 2017 New Year.
To make a reservation, contact DSN: 421-4660/civ. 0711-729-4660.
Cosmic Bowling New Year’s Eve Party on Panzer Kaserne
Enjoy unlimited cosmic bowling, shoe rental, a delicious buffet, party favors and more from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. at the Galaxy Bowling and Entertainment Center on Panzer Kaserne. At midnight, champagne is offered for adults and sparkling grape juice for children. Also take part in the raffle drawings held every 20 minutes for prizes such as a flat screen television, e-reader, cameras, and more.
Purchase tickets in advance! Tickets are available through Dec. 28 at the Bowling Center and cost $35 per adult, $20 per child.
On Dec. 31, walk-in/general admission tickets for adults and children cost $20, sold only if space is available. Note: Day of general admission tickets are for facility access only. Bowling, food and beverages are sold separately in addition to the general admission tickets.
For information, contact DSN: 431-2575/civ. 07013-15-2575.
Silvester with the family at Sensapolis
“Sensapolis” is an indoor play area with amenities such as a ropes course and rock wall located in Sindelfingen. Sensapolis will host a New Year’s Eve event for families Dec. 31. Their New Year’s Eve party starts at 7 p.m., doors open at 6 p.m. Admission includes champagne, buffets, and programs for kids and adults including fireworks and face painting.
For more information, call civ. 07031-20-48530, or www.sensapolis.de.
For a true party atmosphere, Schlossplatz in downtown Stuttgart is the place to go for crowds, clubs and loads of fireworks, Dec. 31. Visitors can also find wooden huts with chocolate and seasonal beverages available for sale. The outdoor ice-skating rink in Schlossplatz is entirely lit up at midnight too. For a good view of downtown, the tower at the Hauptbahnhof, or Stuttgart’s main train station, makes for a great place to watch fireworks.
The view from RB
Areas just outside of Robinson Barracks are an ideal vantage point of the city’s fireworks, perched in the wine hills. Grab a spot early and pay close attention to watch out for community members lighting their own fireworks off in the streets nearby.
Remember: Fireworks are available for personal use in Germany once per year to ring in the New Year, however, fireworks are strictly prohibited on all U.S. installations.
Find more information on fireworks in Germany here.
As the Germans say: “Prosit Neujahr,” or cheers to the New Year!
Editor’s Note: Article originally published by Megan Brown, former Stuttgart High School career practicum intern with USAG Stuttgart’s Public Affairs Office in 2015. Listings are for informational purposes only, no Federal endorsement implied.