A little more than two decades ago the culture within the town of Zwenkau in Saxony was pretty much nil. Yeah, nothing. Zip. Zero. Ziltch.
After the reunification of Germany in the early 1990’s, this original Slavic settlement has seen a Renaissance not seen since, well, the Renaissance. Oh, I just crack myself up. ;-)
So, what do folks around here do now that they didn’t have 20 years ago?
How about shopping at the KAP ZWENKAU, a shopping arcade with restaurants and an exhibition pavilion? They come play at the Belantis Amusement Park; and more than a half million people a year come to chill out on the shores of the Zwenkauer See, which has become quite the popular site for sailing.
Take a trip around the lake itself on the M.S. Santa Barbara Ferry. Or, rent a bicycle and take a ride around the edge of the lake.
Winter? Oh, don’t worry about that! The lake is getting popular with cross-country skiers who like to ski around it. Quite nice if you got the stamina to do it.
Folks also like to take in an evening at the cinema, enjoy musical concerts, and enjoy the festivities at the annual Laurentiusfest which is held on the 2nd weekend of August.
Why the Laurentiusfest? Well, perhaps, it’s because of the beautiful Lutheran St. Laurentius Church. It’s Baroque now (after a fire in 1712), but there has been a church on this spot since about the year 974. Yes, that’s a mighty long time.
If you think you’ve seen all of Zwenkau, you haven’t. There are other festivals to party at, like the May Day Festival and the Martinstag (Martins Day) Festival. Other little festivals and gatherings happen at the Rathaus, which used to be a castle. You really didn’t think there wouldn’t be a castle in a town this old, did you?
There is also a tomb of three unknown Soviet soldiers and a memorial stone to resistance fighters dating back to East German times. You’ll also find themed hiking & biking trails, the Nature Preserve Elsteraue, and temple ruins to visit.
I don’t think anyone could say there wasn’t any culture in Zwenkau today. What a difference a few decades make!