A Christmas Message from our President
A Holiday Message from Our President, Kenny Ott
As the Christmas holiday approaches and our schedules become filled with shopping, parties, and family gatherings, I’d like to take the opportunity to wish all of our Members a Fröhliche Weihnachten! With the New Year less than a month away, I’d also like to thank each of you for contributions in helping to grow our Verein in 2018. Whether you are a singer, dancer, officer, active or passive member, each of you has played a part in helping STV Bavaria become a strong and viable organization.
We certainly were an active Club this year with our annual Bunter Nachmittag, Bratwurstessen, Maifest, and Bierfest events. In addition, our dancers performed for the first time at the Linde Oktoberfest in Tulsa and at the inaugural Pittsburgh Oktoberfest! Our first place Preisplattling team went to Haldenwang, Germany and competed in the Bayerische Löwe and finished a very respectful 5th. We traveled to Altoona to attend the second Gebietsfest. We also had a once in a lifetime experience by being honored to be a Patenverein to our friends D’Lustigen Isartaler from Pittsburgh. I doubt that anyone who attended the Patenbitten in May at the Zentrale will ever forget that evening. It was only surpassed by the beautiful Fahnenweihe we just attended in November. Our choir performed many times throughout the year. Speaking of the choir, our long-time director Alfons Schermaier stepped down from those duties and while we say thank you and farewell to Alfons, we welcome Rudi Hermes as the new director! We also honored five new members into Ehren Mitglied status; Heinz and Marianne Rock, Erich and Renate Rock, and George Schnurr. Congratulations to all!
Next year promises to be just as busy as this year with all of our usual events, including the 30th Anniversary edition of Bunter Nachmittag, but also we have a Gaufest in Washington, D.C. and an Anniversary celebration for our friends in Grainet, Germany. For those that haven’t heard, the band there composed a song for us and we were tasked with coming up with an accompanying Schuhplattler for it! It will make its world debut at their Anniversary in September when they will play it while we dance!
In closing, I want each of you to be as proud as I am to be part of such a wonderful group of people. George Schnurr spoke to me after his award at the Bierfest and shared his sentiments with those of you on Facebook. I think it is one of the most inspiring comments I’ve heard in a while. George said, “I feel honored and grateful for the recognition. But every member, past and present, has left and is leaving footprints in the history of the Club. Some maybe a bit larger than others, but they all have left their mark. Today’s young members deserve our respect for their dedication for maintaining our traditions.” As we pass through the holiday season, I suggest we all take a moment to reflect on those words and ask ourselves how we’ll leave our footprints in 2019.
Gesegnete Weihnachten und ein glückliches neues Jahr!
A blessed Christmas and a happy new year!
Kenny Ott, 1. Vorstand