ANSBACH, Germany (Dec. 1, 2017) -- "Was ist los in Franken?" details off-post community events and activities occurring throughout the Franconian region.

Erlangen on Ice
The public ice skating rink on Marktplatz (between Paulibrunnen and Palais Stutterheim) in Erlangen opens Nov. 24; the rink, located near the Christmas market, is open daily until Jan. 7. Skates are for rent for 3 euros, admission is free. Opening hours are Monday through Friday 2 -- 9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. -- 9 p.m., Dec. 24 and 31 it's 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Dec. 25 and 26 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Jan. 1 noon to 9 p.m. To learn more about Erlangen Christmas activities, go to http://www.erlangen-marketing.de

Ice Rink in Gunzenhausen
Gunzenhausen has put up an ice skating rink on the Marktplatz; highlights include an ice disco and "Eisstockschiessen," Bavarian curling. The ice rink is open Nov. 24 to Jan. 7; to learn more, go to http://eisbahn.gunzenhausen.de/

Open House at the Exotic Animal Sanctuary in Ansbach
The mini zoo for rescued tigers and other exotic animals in Ansbach-Wallersdorf is hosting their monthly open house Sunday, Dec. 3 from 1 to 5 p.m. Guided tours take place every full hour. Visitors will be well taken care of with beverages and food. Admission is free, but donations are always welcome. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/Raubtier-und-Exotenasyl-AnsbachWallersdorf-eV-281469090873

Advent in Franconian farm houses - Bad Windsheim
The open air museum Bad Windsheim features "Advent in fränkischen Bauernstuben" (Advent in Franconian farm houses) on the advent Sundays before Christmas (Dec. 3, 10 and 17), from noon to 4 p.m. Experience holiday mood with traditional music, singing, storytelling, Lebkuchen, coffee and Glühwein. Christmas tree decorations, nativity scenes, wreaths and hand-knitted wool products can be bought on site. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/1933529680307373

Winter flea market in Gunzenhausen
Gunzenhausen is hosting a winter flea market at Hafnermarkt Sunday, Dec. 3 from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. To learn more, visit http://www.gunzenhausen.info/veranstaltungen/grosser_wintertroedelmarkt_in-192082-11661570

Royal Christmas market in Schillingsfürst Castle
The castle of Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst is site of a Christmas market Dec. 1 through 3. The program includes live music by different trombone or horn choirs, and an exhibition of nativity scenes and Armenian painted icons. Opening hours are Friday 6 -- 9:30 p.m., Saturday 3 -- 10 p.m. and Sunday 2 -- 8 p.m.; admission is 2 euros. To learn more, visit http://www.schillingsfuerst.de/fileadmin/Dateien_Schillingsfuerst/Dateien/Weihnachtsmarkt_2017.pdf

Romantic Christmas Market in Anwanden, Gut Wolfgangshof
More than 100 crafters and vendors display their products in rustic huts, a cow stable, a grain hall or in a hay attic at the Christmas market in Gut Wolfgangshof (Weitersdorfer Str. 22) in Anwanden, a little town between Nürnberg and Ansbach. A direct train from Ansbach stops within walking distance. The market is open three weekends, Dec. 1-3, 8-10 and 15-17. Opening hours are Fridays 3 -- 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday noon to 8 p.m.; admission prices vary from 5 euros for adults to 1 euro for children 6 to 15 years; youngsters under six enter for free. To learn more about the market, go to www.gut-wolfgangshof.de

Advent market Cadolzburg
The Advent market in Cadolzburg takes place downtown on the market place Dec. 2 and 3. The little market open Saturday from 2 to 7:30 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Long night of culture and shopping - Ansbach
Ansbach is hosting an extended shopping night dotted with cultural events Saturday, Dec. 9, downtown and in the Brücken-Center. The "Night of 100,000 Lights" features artistic illuminations all over the city. The opening hours of stores and the Christmas market are extended until 11 p.m.; to learn more, go to http://citymarketing-ansbach.de/veranstaltungen/lange-kultur-einkaufsnacht

Christmas pottery market -- Schloss Thurnau
Pottery fans can look forward to the pottery Christmas market in Schloss Thurnau, located along Autobahn A70 between Bamberg and Bayreuth, Dec. 8 through 10. Pottery shops from all over exhibit and sell their work, while visitors can enjoy locally produced food and beverages. Opening hours are Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; admission is free. To learn more, visit www.weihnachtstöpfermarkt-thurnau.com
Christmas market in Schloss Dürrenmungenau
The castle in Abenberg, Schloss Dürrenmungenau (Schlossallee 1), is site of a Christmas market Dec. 8 through 10. Vendors sell arts and crafts, offering ideas for presents, while visitors enjoy hot beverages and food and listen to the trombone choir. Find out more at www.facebook.com/events/558580944473140 .

Heilsbronn Christmas market
The Christmas market in Heilsbronn is scheduled for Dec. 8 through 10 downtown. Opening hours are Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 4 -- 9 p.m. and Sunday 2 -- 8 p.m. To learn more, visit http://www.heilsbronn.de

Sternlesmarkt in Wolframs-Eschenbach
The traditional Sternlesmarkt in Wolframs-Eschenbach, a small regional Christmas market, takes place Dec. 16 and 17. The market is open 3-9 p.m. on Saturday and 1-7 p.m. on Sunday. To learn more, visit http://www.wolframs-eschenbach.de

Advent market Markt Erlbach
The annual Advent market in Markt Erlbach takes place Sunday, Dec. 17 from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Kirchgasse and Kirchplatz. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/387125925052850

Herrieden Christmas Market
The Herrieden Christmas market in the main square will take place Dec. 22 and 23. The booths, manned by volunteers, are offering food and beverages, as well as hand-made ornaments and other little decorations. The opening ceremony is Friday at 5 p.m., when the mayor and the Christkind ring in the season together with the local children's choir.

Continuous holiday markets ....

Franconian Christmas Market Ansbach
The traditional Franconian Ansbach Christmas market opens Thursday, Nov. 30 at Martin-Luther-Platz downtown. A crafts exhibition in the Stadthaus (first floor, co-located with the tourist information office) features handmade Christmas decorations and much more.
The market is open daily until Dec. 24; opening hours are Monday through Wednesday 11 a.m. -- 8 p.m. and Thursday through Sunday 11 a.m. -- 9 p.m. The market closes at 1 p.m. on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24. For more details, including an event program and a site map, go to http://citymarketing-ansbach.de/veranstaltungen/Weihnachtsmarkt

Christkindlesmarkt in Nürnberg
Every year, Germany's most famous Christmas Market opens its stalls for visitors from all over the world, right in the middle of the city, on Nuremberg Main Market Square. Dec. 1 at 5.30 p.m. (the Friday before the first Advent Sunday), the Christkind opens her market, reciting the solemn prologue from the gallery of the Church of Our Lady. And as every year, by Christmas Eve, more than two million people from all over the world will have visited the Nürnberg Christmas Market.
About 180 wooden stalls, decorated with red-and-white cloth, hold the traditional goods: Nürnberg Lebkuchen (gingerbread), Früchtebrot (fruit loaves), bakery goods and sweets, typical Christmas articles such as Christmas tree angels, cribs, tree ornaments and candles, toys as well as arts and crafts products. The Zwetschgenmännla (plum people), little figures made from prunes, make a popular souvenir. Refreshments include, of course, Nürnberger Bratwurst and Glühwein (mugs of hot mulled wine).
Using public transportation is always recommended, especially on opening day. The market is about ten minutes by foot downhill from the Hauptbahnhof (main train station). It is open daily 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., finally closing at 2 p.m. on Christmas Eve. Detailed information in English can be found at www.christkindlesmarkt.de

Kinderweihnacht - Nürnberg
The Kinderweihnacht, a special Christmas market for children with historical carrousels, Ferris wheel, train, glass and candle workshops and Christmas bakery, is located on Hans-Sachs-Platz, right around the corner of the famous Nürnberg Christkindlesmarkt. Opening times are daily 10 a.m. -- 9 p.m. Dec. 1 through 24 (closes at 2 p.m.). To learn more, go to www.christkindlesmarkt.de

The "Reiterlesmarkt" of Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Once a year, the medieval town of Rothenburg is transformed into a winter wonderland during the annual Reiterlesmarkt; this wonderful Christmas market has been the highlight of the festive Christmas season in Rothenburg since the 15th century. Today the narrow and winding streets and the squares around the Town Hall, its archways and the market square are still lined with stalls where one can find almost anything associated with a German Christmas market: pastries, white mulled wine and handcrafted decorations.
Numerous cultural events are held in conjunction with the market. Daily events include a guided tour starting at 2 p.m. at the market square, and a visit by the Pelzmärtel (German Santa) at 4:30 p.m. Every day a new window of the "advent calendar" on the town hall is opened at 5 p.m.; a concert by a brass band follows at 5:30 p.m.
The Rothenburg Reiterlesmarkt is open Dec. 1 through 23; opening hours are Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m. -- 7 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. -- 8 p.m. For further information about the Rothenburg market contact the Rothenburg Tourismus Service on Marktplatz 2 at 09861-404-800 or info@rothenburg.de, or visit the website at www.tourismus.rothenburg.de

Medieval Christmas Market in Fürth
The Medieval Christmas Market in Fürth takes place at the Freiheit Nov. 30 through Dec. 23; it is open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and offers crafts and performances, campfires, jugglers, fire artists and much more. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/mittelalterweihnachtsmarkt

Bad Windsheim Christmas market
The Christmas market in Bad Windsheim at Marktplatz is open Thursday through Sunday, starting Nov. 30 until Dec. 23. Opening hours are 3 -- 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and 1 -- 8 p.m. on the weekends.

Dinkelsbühl Christmas Market
Dinkelsbühl -- sometimes called the little Rothenburg because of its historical walled city -- features a unique little Christmas market, open Nov. 30 through Dec. 22. Booths offer not only the usual food and beverages, but all kinds of decoration of gift items. Worth mentioning is the arts and crafts bazaar, tucked away in a building in the corner of the market with handmade brick-a-brac and trinkets. The market is open 1 -- 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. -- 8 p.m. on weekends. To learn more, visit www.tourismus-dinkelsbuehl.de

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The information on local host nation events is provided through the auspices of the USAG Ansbach Public Affairs Office (PAO). All details provided are for informational purposes only and are a representation of typical events conducted in the local community. The PAO grants no element of exclusivity to any outside agency or business and any reference to commercial or retail activities implies no endorsement or recommendation by the U. S. Army or its agencies. Participation in any event or activity described herein is strictly voluntary and should be done so only after careful advisement and consideration of the safety and security environment at each specific location.