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GA English on Sunday : News in Brief from Bonn and the region

GA English on Sunday : News in Brief from Bonn and the region

Barriers and checks prevent large crowds in Bonn Altstadt, Panama Open Air festival postponed, local church maintains Easter bell ringing tradition and wild boar piglets in the Waldau forest - here is our news in brief on Sunday.

Latest coronavirus figures and Altstadt closure

As of Saturday, a total of 484 confirmed cases of coronavirus infections have so far been reported to Bonn’s public health department. 366 of these are acute; 116 people have recovered. There are currently 1007 Bonn residents in quarantine. Two people have died as a result of the infection.

From Wednesday lunchtime several streets in the Altstadt were closed by the city council. Barriers were set up at eight locations around Heerstraße, Breite Straße, Kölnstraße and Maxstraße. Daily controls are being carried out until after Easter. The city’s initial assessment of the measures is positive – large crowds of people have been prevented and some residents have already expressed their thanks. A few people showed a lack of understanding, complained about the barriers and tried to be let through under false pretences. However, this is only a minority, according to Carsten Sperling, head of the city’s public order services at the civic service office: “The barriers are fulfilling their purpose, so that residents can move around at the required distances without any problems.” (Original text: GA)

Panama Open Air Festival postponed to September

Following the rescheduling of the Robbie Williams, Kraftwerk and Fantastischen Vier concerts from mid-May to the end of August due to the corona epidemic, another major event in Bonn joins the list: the Panama Open Air Festival in the Rheinaue park will be moved from its original dates in July to the first weekend in September. The rescheduling of the festival, which is one of the biggest open-air electronic music events, was announced by organiser Sandro Heinemann of RheinEvents. "The current situation does not give us good planning security for July", Heinemann told GA. The low number of ticket sales also demonstrate the public’s uncertainty. Heinemann explained that the event’s transfer to September went smoothly and an alternative date was quickly agreed, particularly thanks to the support of Bonn city.

The first line-up has already been confirmed and none of the performers have cancelled. Further artists are to be announced in the coming weeks. Tickets that have already been purchased remain valid for the alternative date, and those unable to attend in September can exchange their ticket for next year's festival. Sandro Heinemann stressed that he was “very optimistic” that the festival would take place in September. More information about the Panama Open Air Festival can be found at: www.panamaopenair.com (Original text: Maximilian Mühlens)

‘Beiern’ tradition in Bonngasse church

This weekend the Namen-Jesu-Kirche (Church of the Name of Jesus) on Bonngasse is keeping with the local tradition of striking the bells over Easter. The custom, called ‘Beiern’ in German, is being observed by the church on Easter Sunday at 10 a.m., on Easter Monday at 6 p.m. and on the Sunday of the following week, 19th April, at 10 a.m. In contrast to ringing the bells by swinging, during ‘Beiern’, the church bells are struck manually in fixed rhythms, producing a characteristic sound. These particular rhythms are handed down locally as part of the tradition. The melodies are created using a clapper which strikes the bells at various points with the help of ropes. The custom is particularly widespread in the Rhineland. (Original text: fa / Caroline Kusch)

City warns against visiting wild boar piglets

If it were not for the current corona restrictions, Bonn's number one excursion destination, the Waldau forest, has a new attraction which would normally be pulling in the crowds: In the wild boar enclosure a sow has recently given birth to six piglets. This was announced by the Bonn press office in response to a GA inquiry. The cute little striped animals have now left their birthing nest and are moving around the enclosure. However, as the GA photographer discovered, you hardly get to see them at the moment. There are a total of 23 animals living in the enclosure besides the new offspring: two boars and five sows - whether the other four will also have young is still to be seen - as well as 16 juveniles, young boars in their second year. “In view of the current corona situation, it is not in our interests for people to gather in front of the enclosure,” says the press office. It would not be possible to observe the distancing rules. Therefore, the food dispensers are empty at the moment.

Although the city has not cited a possible closure of the Waldau, this option has been hanging in the air since the closure of the Altstadt. The city stated that the people of Bonn should learn from this and spend Easter at home, or at least avoid the hotspots, which include the animal enclosures. The piglets will still be cute in a month's time, and maybe by then there will be some new ones to visit too.

(Original text: Stefan Knopp)(Translations: Caroline Kusch)