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Lamboyfest Hanau

History of Hanau's traditional festival

Pictures and impressions of Lamboyfest

Lamboyfest Hanau is one of the oldest folk festivals in Hessen. It draws thousands of visitors into the old town of Hanau every year.
Squares and lanes come alive with street performers, jugglers, food stalls and music. The festival is an event for the entire family. It is celebrated on a weekend close to the 13th June.

Food stalls and celebrating crowds in front of the historic house of goldsmiths at Lamboyfest in Hanau

Celebrating in front of the House of Goldsmiths

The 381th Lamboyfest takes place in the old town of Hanau from
Friday 9th June to Sunday 11th June 2017

History of Lamboyfest Hanau

  • During the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648) Hanau was occupied by the Swedish Army under the Scottish General Ramsay. The base of operation in Hanau enabled Ramsay to garrison Frankfurt and Mainz as well, much to the disapproval of the imperial troops.
    At that time, Hanau was a fortified city, totally croweded with its own citizens, soldiers and people seeking refuge from the rigours of the war. The imperialists had no chance to invade the city, so in 1635 they decided to starve Hanau out.
  • General Guillaume de Lamboy with its imperial troops besieged Hanau for nearly 9 months. The situation in the city was terrible. Finally, Wilhelm V. of Hesse Kassel, an ally of the Swedish king Gustav II Adolf, freed the besieged city.
  • Graf Philipp Moritz, regent of Hanau, ordered an annual thanksgiving service on 13th June to commemorate the freedom. In the course of time this service lead into the Lamboyfest we celebrate today. However, the church service in St. Mary's Church is still held on the opening day of the annual Lamboyfest festival.
  • Why the event was named after General Lamboy, the person who put so much harm on Hanau's citizens in the 17th century, is hard to understand. There is also a street and a quarter in the city named after Lamboy.
  • In the 19th century Hanau citizens began to celebrate the liberation in a wooded area east of the city centre which became quickly known as Lamboywald (Lamboy woods).
  • In the 1980s the festival moved to Freiheitsplatz in the city centre. In my opinion, the event lost a bit of its special flair at that time.
  • Hanau's old town celebrated the 700th anniversary of city rights in 2003. This was the first year the Lamboyfest was held in the old town, a huge success.

Impressions from Saturday Night 2013

celebrating at schlossplatz
Celebrating at Schlossplatz...
celebrating at schlossplatz
...Even a little rain could not disturb the fun
walking on stilts in colourful costumes
The Beauty & the Knight
stilt walker with butterfly costume
The parade of the butterflies
the owner of mobile pub
The Guinness Stand
musicians on a stage
Hanau's famous jazz band - The Sugarfood Stompers
As usual, the Lamboyfest offers a wide range of activities, music on several stages, good food and drinks. Local associations, sport clubs and music schools & bands are involved in the 3-days event. It is fest for the entire family that helps to keep the history alive.

Impressions from the Lamboyfest 2010

The three-days celebratons began on Friday with the historical play "Schluss is, Lamboy" which has the event of 1636 as central theme. After the following ecumenical service mayor Claus Kaminsky opened the 374th Lamboyfest on the main stage at Schlossplatz.

Pop, rock jazz and reggae acts entertained the crowds on 6 stages throughout the old town.

On Saturday and Sunday a medieval market was the huge attraction. Craftsmen, dressed in medieval clothes, demonstrated long forgotten handicrafts. For me this was the most-interesting attraction, something you don't see every day.

Lamboyfest Hanau knights helmet
Wearing that helmet
Lamboyfest Hanau knights armour
Suits of armour

Kids enjoyed the knights' performances and sword-plays on the market place in front of the house of goldsmiths. They could even try what it was like to wear a helmet.

lamboyfest hanau
lamboyfest hanau
Blacksmith at work

lamboyfest hanau
Stilt Theatre
lamboyfest hanau weaver
Colourful costumes, music and fun

The culinary delights offered at the food stalls did not only represent traditional German cuisine, but also many treats from Hanau's multi-cultural citizens.
The Lamboyfest in Hanau was again a beautiful and exciting event.

Discover more about Hanau, its culture and the surrounding regions

Copyright © 2010- Rita Amend.
Copyright © 2010- Rita Amend.