When you think of parades, brightly colored costumes and parties this time of year, Mardi Gras may come to mind. But instead of Mardi Gras, think Fasching.
Fasching is a common celebration in countries such as Germany, Switzerland and Austria that celebrates the pre-Lenten season. But North Georgia residents do not have to travel to Eastern Europe to partake in these festivities. Just make the trip north to the alpine Village of Helen.
The event kicks off at 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 6, with contests, music and games at the Old Heidelberg Inn, at 8660 N. Main St.
The celebration will continue Saturday, Feb. 7, with the parade starting at 2 p.m. followed by a float down the river.
This year’s Fasching celebration is expected to be double the size of previous years.
Young and old residents alike will float down the Chattahoochee River, wearing brightly colored costumes and beads in the rain, sleet or snow.
Later that night, the official Fasching party will be from 7-11 p.m. in the city’s Festhalle at 1074 Edelweiss Strasse.
Admission is $25 per couple and $13 per person and is recommended for adults 21 and older.
Costumes are welcome at all events. Light snacks will be provided. Wine and beer will be available for purchase.
The festival is hosted by the Helen Faschingsverein group, which helps to promote appreciation of German culture in Helen by maintaining a relationship with residents of Fuessen, Germany, and bringing their culture to Georgia.