German house hosts Karneval

Maggie+Dugan%2C+%E2%80%9918%2C+paints+the+face+of+Elsie+Hendricks%2C+%E2%80%9918%2C+during+Karneval+on+Thursday%2C+Feb.+18%2C+2016.+Both+students+studied+abroad+in+Cologne%2C+Germany+last+semester+and+experienced+Karneval+in+the+city.+
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German house hosts Karneval

Maggie Dugan, ’18, paints the face of Elsie Hendricks, ’18, during Karneval on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Both students studied abroad in Cologne, Germany last semester and experienced Karneval in the city.

Maggie Dugan, ’18, paints the face of Elsie Hendricks, ’18, during Karneval on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Both students studied abroad in Cologne, Germany last semester and experienced Karneval in the city.

Meghan Hayman

Maggie Dugan, ’18, paints the face of Elsie Hendricks, ’18, during Karneval on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Both students studied abroad in Cologne, Germany last semester and experienced Karneval in the city.

Meghan Hayman

Meghan Hayman

Maggie Dugan, ’18, paints the face of Elsie Hendricks, ’18, during Karneval on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Both students studied abroad in Cologne, Germany last semester and experienced Karneval in the city.

Eylie Buehler, Features Editor

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Allegheny hosted a German Karneval on Thursday Feb. 18 in honor of a similar celebration that will be taking place overseas.

According to germanclubsandiego.org German Karneval is the German version of Mardi Gras.  The celebration begins on Nov. 11 at 11:11 a.m. and continues until Ash Wednesday, usually in February or March. Karneval is traced back to Medieval times when areas of Germany were under harsh monarchy rule.  Karneval was a time where common people were able to poke fun at royalty and live by their own rules for a day.

The people would select a mock government who would rule over Karneval season.  There were parades, elaborate spreads of food and drink, masquerade balls, costumes and dancing in the street.  According to Maggie Dugan, ’18, the celebration is not much different in Germany now.

Dugan studied abroad in Cologne, Germany for four months last semester and was able to take part in Karneval while she was there.

“Karneval is the celebration of the fifth season,” Dugan said.  “In Cologne specifically they have a lot of cultural aspects to the city, especially in the old part of the city, that are devoted specifically to Karneval.”   

Dugan said when she was there all of the Allegheny students who studied in Germany celebrated the beginning of Karneval. She said that there are two big days to celebrate, one marking the beginning of Karneval and the other marking the end. The bigger of the two days marks the end of the season.

“We all got dressed up, and we all went into the city, and the trains are jammed that day going into the city,” Dugan said.  “You go down into the old market place and they have live music playing, everyone is drinking, if they aren’t already drunk, a lot of singing and just a lot of comradery.”

Dugan said they counted down until 11:11 a.m. as Americans countdown until the New Year.  Afterwards she said the singing and dancing and pub crawling continues into the night.

Dugan said that there is nothing like what she experienced while she was in Germany during the start of Karneval but the fact that there will be a recreation of the event at Allegheny makes the transition from German life back to life in Meadville a little bit easier.

Hanna Adus, the German teaching assistant, said she wanted to make the celebration as authentic as possible.

“I am missing [Karneval] this year, but this is why we are celebrating,” Adus said.

Adus said that while the music, games and food were similar to what she experiences in her hometown of Cologne, Germany, there are some parts of the celebration that cannot be replicated.

“What’s not here is the alcohol which plays a big role in Germany,” Adus said.  “But I think we can have fun anyways.”

Adus said that the day is a way for people to be something they normally are not. She said that everyone dresses up in costumes as something that they want to be.

“Doctors dress up as [construction workers] and nurses dress up as cowgirls,” Adus said.  “It’s really fun.”

Dugan and Adus said that they wanted people to walk away from the event appreciating German culture and wanting to get more of an idea of German customs.

Kevin Orr, ’17, attended the event with friends to get a better idea of what Karneval was and to enjoy the food and music.

“I have some German in me and I think after this I’ll get more in touch with my German roots,” Orr said.

While the event was just a small preview of what really goes on during Karneval, Dugan said that the event allowed her to be in Germany once more.

“I think that the experience here just adds to cultural awareness and it adds to this idea that you can experience that culture wherever you go in some way, shape or form,” Dugan said.  

 

Hanna Adus, the German teaching assistant, throws candy on the table while Justin Jurczyk, ’17, and friends enjoy authentic German food.

Brittany Adams
Hanna Adus, the German teaching assistant, throws candy on the table while Justin Jurczyk, ’17, and friends enjoy authentic German food.

 Danushka Cornejo, ’19, and Vicquaja Mangal, ’19, use props in the photobooth set up at Karneval in the campus center on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016.

Meghan Hayman
Danushka Cornejo, ’19, and Vicquaja Mangal, ’19, use props in the photobooth set up at Karneval in the campus center on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016.

Students eat potato salad, sausages and pretzels at the event on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016 in the campus center.

Meghan Hayman
Students eat potato salad, sausages and pretzels at the event on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016 in the campus center.

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