Get ready for Schueberfouer!

In just two days, Luxembourg will hold the 670th annual Schueberfouer.

Try to wrap your mind around a tradition that old. More than 30 generations.

As an ex-pat, I’m interested in looking at it from the perspective of cultural integration — or how long it takes to be considered a native. Consider the Daughters of the American Revolution, who have surely been in North America long enough to be considered well-integrated. Yet each of the white DAR members today can only trace her family’s presence in North America back through about 10 generations. So let’s say that a family that stays in the same area for 10 generations is not exactly a far-flung gypsy clan. More like local nobility — or land-bound serfs — but surely local.

Consider what that means for the Schueberfouer. A merchant at the first Schueberfouer could have migrated to Eastern Europe, founded a village there, and his family could have stayed in that village for as long as the USA has existed. Then, one of his descendants could have married a traveler and moved to Ireland. Her family could have lived in a town in Ireland for 10 generations before the upheavals of the 18th Century drove one of her descendants to the American colonies. And then one of her descendants could be a DAR member today, visiting Luxembourg during a summer trip on the family money.

The entire time, the Schueberfouer has been an annual event in roughly the same spot. (But no roller-coasters until the 20th Century, or for about one-tenth of its history.)

Anticipation is growing among the residents of Luxembourg that we know, life-long and short-term alike. Some people are looking forward to the hubbub of the outdoor beer gardens. Others, the giant Ferris wheel that takes you high above the city.

To get you ready for the Schueberfouer, we’ve posted photos from our visit to the fair last year. Enjoy the photoset, but be warned that some photos may not be safe for work (i.e. NSFW). The phrase “family fun event” means something slightly different in Luxembourg than in the US.

8 Comments to “Get ready for Schueberfouer!”

  1. Jaime said...
    18 August 2010

    My tiny American brain can’t actually process how mindbendingly long this festival has been ongoing. Is it 670 consecutive years? Even if it’s not I’m very impressed.


  2. Anita said...
    19 August 2010

    We’re investigating the “consecutive” since there might have been a short break during the French revolution. More details to come.

    Interesting tidbid – you can reserve a table at the festival! We’ll be there with friends this weekend and we won’t have to fight for a space. Now that’s a fair!

  3. The Expatresse said...
    19 August 2010

    How do you reserve a table?

  4. Will said...
    19 August 2010

    Call the restaurant of your choice directly and ask for a reservation. Here’s a webpage with the phone numbers of the restaurants:

    I don’t know much about the individual restaurants, but the website ( looks comprehensive.

  5. Laurie said...
    21 August 2010

    where’s the fun in a festival if you don’t have to arrive at 6am to hold your spot on the Grant Park lawn for the fireworks?! :) sounds fun. espcially the bier garten…

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