Nationwide Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage
Easter-Wheel-Run in Luedge
The Easter-Wheel-Run is a central event for the inhabitants of Luedge – the “City of Easter Wheels”. With the involvement of all generations, the beginning of spring is celebrated. Tradition requires the mastery of a variety of specific techniques that are passed on through active youth work.
Facts & figures
- Crucial date: Easter Sunday Evening
- Inscription: 2018
- Domains: traditional craftsmanship; rituals and festivals, social customs; knowledge and practice concerning nature and the universe
- Where to find: Lüdge
On Easter Sunday Evening, a special custom takes places in Luedge. Burning oak wheels are rolled down from a mountain outside the historic centre of Luedge. However, it is not the wood of the wheels that catches fire but the straw the wheels are stuffed with. These wheels are being watered five days long in the river “Emmer”, which is flowing through Luedge. The custom requires straw from a certain rye that is cultivated especially for this very tradition. Afterwards, the straw is woven into the wheels. These steps, namely the cultivation, harvesting and processing of the straw, are parts of the entire custom.
A broad audience participates in the process of watering the wheels in the Emmer. Easter Sunday is the official prelude to the Easter-Wheel-Run. Starting off with a concert, the city’s inhabitants walk through the city and the wheels, mounted on horse-drawn wagons, are presented. They are then transported to the Osterberg where they are stuffed with straw. Cannon shots resound once a wheel is entirely prepared. At nightfall, the wheels are set on fire one after the other and rolled down the mountain. Every wheel that reaches the run-off area at the foot of the mountain is appreciated by the audience with a loud shout. A firework appears in the end of the event to finalize the procedures.