1. May, Maypole Perlach

, Sheila the day before the erection of the Maypole

Since medieval times the erection of a Maypole is common in germanitic coutries but also practised in Skandinavia (here also common in midsummer) or in german communities in America. Some foreign partner cities also received them as a present from their german partners. (Domont France)

The Maypoles in Bavaria are normally erected by “Burschenvereine” (clubs of “not to old” unmarried men ) and erecting the Maypoles is the most important assignment of those clubs next to promoting local friendship (saludos amigos). Touching a Maypole if you are not a member of the club is forbidden and not adequate. A big and imporant tradition and second most important assignment of “Burschenvereine” in Bavaria is steeling the Maypole of other clubs before the erection and it is a big and serious issue to guard the tree ahead of the big event. Any attempt to steel the tree has to stop as soon as any of the members of the home team Burschenverein puts his hand on the tree. No fight ist allowed. If the tree is stolen than horable, serious negotiations have to start about the ransom money (in form of  beer and a “Brotzeit” (bavarian buffet) and it always ends in a big party (it seems as some clubs like it if their Maypole is stolen). In an outstanding event the Maypole on the Zugspitze was stolen 2004 presumed by the help of a helicopter by Austriens. The Zugspitze is Germanys highest mountain.

This years erection of the Maypole party in Perlach, (part of Munich) by the BURSCHENVEREIN PERLACH E.V.  is running right at the moment, the last salute shots to indicate the successfull procedure have been shot only minutes ago, the brass music is playing and now it’s time to celebrate. To be able to make it through the long nights of guarding the Maypole the Buschen have to be able to drink big amounts of beer. The BURSCHENVEREIN PERLACH successfully stole Maypoles the past years. Sheila has no information about this year.

Size of course also matters, the bigger the Maypole the better. Since seveal years and occasional accidents it is no longer allowed to erect Maypolse by muscle power in Munich (insurance is also an issue) so cranes are deployed these days which gives more time to celebrate. Normally there is a friendship between the local fire department and the Burschenvereinen as the young members may be members of both.

The evening before, boys and girls practising for the dance round the Maypole taking place the next day next to the still grounded Maypole already with live brass music (small combo)

At the picturesque town’ s place next to the brook, war memorial and local church. Another true picture book Bavaria.

Getting by the branches of one of the trees next to the rising Maypole took all the cleverness and experience of many years. Some of the motto pannels (of traditional craftmen) on the right side had to be attached after the Maypole was already standing. With the pannels already on the Maypole it would not have fitted through the branches.The Maypole is a real beauty and big, Sheila will try to get more informations soon. Update: according to this video it is more than 34 m high.


To celebrate the event, Sheila and I shared a “Weißbier” from “Ayinger”, another good local bavarian beer brewer in Aying. Phillip Lahm, bavarian soccer star playing for the FC Bayern Munich married in Aying 2010.

I suggest you scroll into the google satellite picture and check out more of the American Alternative Facts. In fact there is only one Maypole and not two like indicated on the google picture.

The Burschenverein Oberpframmern tried to steel the Perlacher Maypole this year 2017 at 4 a clock in the night but the attentive, still sober enough crew of the Perlacher in their well equiped “Wachhütten” (guards hut) could prefent the attempt.

 The hut was equipped with flipper machines, drinks and food supply and Pay-TV to make it through the long nights of guarding. There is also some sort of tourism, travelling fr0m guard hut to guard hut and have a drink or too with the local Burschen, the drinks which are also provided for the visitors. A sacrilege however was committed by a overmotivated women club which smeered some paint on the tree but the crime was documented on camera and the culprits caught. They had to pay for the damage.

And here are some more pictures of the now beautifully standing Maypole in Perlach.

In another striking event another important Maypole in Munich was stolen 2017, the iconic Maypole on the Viktualienplatz 36 m high with the panel of the Wittelsbacher Herzog Albrecht IV. This amazing coup was accomplished by an alliance ot the Burschenvereine Ismaning, Neufinsing and Unterföhring, each of them of course having their own Maypoles which are renewed normally every 5 years or so.

Maypole in Ismaning

and Unterföhring, Sheila sitting on the back wings of a helicopter right in the town center of Unterföhring were a local fare took place today and where the helicopter was shown. Sheila insisted to make a stop. The helicopter was   n o t    used to steel the treee on the Viktualienmarkt 2017.


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