Today is “Altweiber” in some parts of Germany. What does this mean to people who don’t speak German? It means that it’s the Thursday before Ash Wednesday, which is the first day of Lent for many Christians.
We’re telling you this because at 11:11am today, the lights above Werth, the central shopping street in the pedestrian area of Barmen in Wuppertal, were turned on for precisely 11 minutes in celebration of “Altweiber”. From today until Ash Wednesday, on February 14th (also Valentine’s Day this year), the lights will be turned on morning and night, sending a ripple of color through 211 decorative balls filled with LEDs, each of which can be controlled individually.
The lighting display was commissioned by ISG Barmen-Werth together with the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the city of Wuppertal for the festive period over Christmas and New Year. Known locally as the “Barmer Light Magic”, MK Illumination designed and installed the colorful lighting display, in partnership with MK Premium Partner Reeger GmbH, in November 2017, and we’re thrilled that the lights are still making people smile well into February!