The carnival season begins in Munich today (November 11) with the Narrhalla and crowning of the Fasching Prince and Princess at the Viktualienmarkt at 11:11am. Below is a video of the event from last year. Other Bavarian and German regions will also crown their pair today. A host of gala nights, balls, parades and processions will be held in the City and throughout the Free State (Oide Wiesn, Ball der Nationen, Hippie-Fasching, our favourite – the Ball Total, etc.) although Munich and Bavaria are by far not carnival crazy as other parts of Germany (Cologne, Dusseldorf, etc.).
The first events are the so-called “black and white“ balls, elegant affairs, where fancy dress gives way to silk dinner jackets and extravagant evening gowns. As Fasching progresses so the number of ballls increases. The spectrum is many-sided – the Washer-women’s Ball, the “Carnival in Rio“, the “Schabernackt“, the Fashion School’s Ball or that of the local sports club. Then there are the children’s Fasching parties, the private parties and the impromptu office celebrations. The list is endless.
The wildest days of Fasching are the last ones, culminating in a climax on Faschingssonntag (the Sunday preceding Shrove Tuesday) as well as on Faschingsdienstag itself, of course. On these days Fasching doughnuts are sold by the dozen and Munich invites all and sundry to join in the masquerading, singing, dancing and general carnival revelry in the city centre. It is on Faschingsdienstag, too, that the traditional dance of the market women takes place on the Vikualienmarkt. Munich`s restaurants offer Ash Wednesday fish specialities and on the Marienplatz purses are washed out in the Fish Fountain, a tradition said to ensure for that they will not be emptied for at least another year.