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1. May Maypole the Procedure

Nürnberg Schöner Brunnen Hauptmarkt


Sheila the day before the erection of the Maypole

Since medieval times the erection of a Maypole is common in German speaking countries. But it is also practiced in Scandinavia (here 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 too old” unmarried men).

-Erecting the Maypoles is the most important assignment of those clubs.

-Next to promoting local friendship (Saludos Amigos).

-A big and important tradition of “Burschenvereine” in Bavaria is stealing 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 must stop as soon as any of the members of the home team Burschenverein puts his hand on the tree.

No fight is allowed. If the tree is stolen, honorable, serious negotiations must start about the ransom money.

In form of beer and a internationally appreciated  “Brotzeit” (Bavarian buffet).


It always ends in a big party. It seems like some clubs welcome the stealing of their Maypole.


In an outstanding event the Maypole on the Zugspitze was stolen 2004. Presumably by the help of a helicopter, by Austrians. The Zugspitze is Germany’s highest mountain.

This year’s erection of the Maypole team in Perlach (part of Munich), by the BURSCHENVEREIN PERLACH E.V. 

is running right now.

-The last salute shots to indicate the successful procedure have been shot only minutes ago,

-the brass music is playing

-and now it’s time to celebrate.


Size of course matters, the bigger the Maypole the better. It is no longer allowed to erect Maypoles by sheer muscle power. Some accidents happened. Insurance is an issue.

Cranes are deployed these days. That gives more time to celebrate. Normally there is a friendship between the local fire department and the Burschenvereinen. The young members are often members of both.

Touching a Maypole if you are not a member of the club is forbidden and not adequate.

The evening before, boys and girls practiced for the dance round the Maypole. 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 panels (of traditional craftsmen) on the right side had to be attached after the Maypole was already standing. With the panels 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 information. 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 Munichmarried 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. Maybe two overlapping pictures.

The Burschenverein Oberpframmern tried to steal 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-equipped “Wachhütten” (guards hut) could prevent the attempt.


To be able to make it through the long nights of guarding the Maypole, the Burschen must drink big amounts of beer. The BURSCHENVEREIN PERLACH itselve, successfully stole Maypoles the past years. Sheila has no information about this year.


The hut was equipped with

-flipper machines,


-food supply

-and Pay-Tv.

To make it through the long nights of guarding.

There is also some sort of tourism.

Travelling from guard hut to the next and have a drink or too with the local Burschen.

The drinks are also provided for the visitors.


A sacrilege however was committed by an over-motivated women club. They smeared some paint on the tree. The crime was documented on camera and the culprits caught. There is reason to suspect, that alcohol was involved. They had to pay for the damage.

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


In another striking event another important Maypole in Munich was stolen 2017.

The iconic Maypole on the Viktualienplatz. Which was

36 m high with the panel of the Wittelsbacher Herzog Albrecht IV. This amazing coup was accomplished by an alliance of 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 was sitting on the back wings of a helicopter. In the town center of Unterföhring. A local fare took place today and the Helicopter was shown. Sheila insisted to make a stop. The Helicopter was   n o t    used to steal the tree on the Viktualienmarkt 2017. Or on the Zugspitze Mountain.

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