It's time to burn the Böögg

8th April 2011, Comments 0 comments

WooHoo! It's spring. Time to blow up a snowman.

On Monday, it's that time of the year again, where a part of Zurich's male population plays Robin Hood - or at least men in tights. Sächseläuten starts with the children's parade on Sunday but the highlight is on Monday with the guilds marching through the centre.

When the church bells start to ring at 6 pm (hence the name) it's time to burn the Böögg, a snowman effigy stuffed with firecrackers. The sooner its head explodes , the better the summer weather forecast.

If you want to avoid the crowds, you can also have your own private Sächseläuten with a pocket sized Böögg. For the rest, Bellevue is the place to be.

From Mascotte you have the perfect view. It opens at 4 pm for invited guests only. Afterwards you can grill a sausage on the still-hot coals of the Böögg's pyre. Or chose one of the many stalls to get a bite to eat or a drink. Of course, there is also the infamous party at Mascotte starting at 7 pm.

Before Böögg
If the thought of an exploding snowman doesn't quite do it for you then wait until you hear about pre-Böögg build up. On Sunday, Stall 6 are having the Lauter Festival, where Swiss and international bands are playing for your delight, and all for free. Bands include Black Box Revelation, Alvin Zealot, Les Yeux Sans Visage and local talent like Ian Constable.

After the festival, it's all over to X-tra for the after-show party. And if you're not ready to see a snowman explode after all that, you need to take a good look at your life's priorities.

Sunday 4 pm, Stall 6

Sunday 9.30 pm, X-tra


Facts: Weather Oracle
Popular tradition has it that the time between the lighting of the pyre and the explosion of the Böögg`s head is indicative of the coming summer: a quick explosion promises a warm, sunny summer, a drawn-out burning a cold and rainy one. The shortest time on record is 5:07 minutes in 1974, and the longest in 2001 with 26:23.

Source: Ron Orp's Mail, Wikipedia

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