Wichtelsonntag – what a great idea!

2014-12-23 15.03.51

Did you have a great time over Christmas?
Did you get some great presents? Or did you get something you don’t like or already have?

While on holidays in Germany I spotted the above poster (which was behind glass, hence the reflection of other things in the photo) about a ‘Wichtelsonntag’, which intrigued me and I did some research:

Wichtel = gnome, imp and Sonntag = Sunday, so this ‘gnome Sunday’ is a special event on a Sunday after Christmas. It seems to happen in only a few towns in Germany, but I think it’s a lovely idea, so I’ll tell you about it.

On a Sunday after Christmas, in Rheine it was the 28th December, people can take any unwanted (but new) presents to a collection place (in Rheine it was the market place). For every present they donate they get a go on the wheel of fortune, where they can win a prize or a voucher from local traders, who will be open that day (Shops in Germany are usually closed on a Sunday). Unfortunately, they could also win nothing! Later that day, the unwanted presents will be auctioned off and the money raised goes to charity. The whole event is accompanied by entertainment.

I didn’t get the chance to go and check it out but I heard that many people went. It sounds like a great idea – people get rid of any unwanted presents, they get the chance of winning prizes, shops are open, there is entertainment and the chance of buying a different present in the auction, and money is raised for charity.

It’s a win – win situation and far more exciting than selling your unwanted gifts on Ebay? What do you think?

4 thoughts on “Wichtelsonntag – what a great idea!

  1. Sounds a very good idea. We have cut down on presents to avoid acquiring unnecessary things. As long as I get my stocking filled by Father Christmas, I am happy!

    1. Luckily I don’t recall ever having received an unwanted gift, except a jumper I desperately wanted as a child, which turned out to be so scratchy that I’ve never worn it …
      But a filled stocking sounds good, not much can go wrong 😉

  2. Great idea – with a birthday at Christmas it’s the only time of year I receive presents and in the past I have re gifted a duplicate or necessary present.

    1. While walking through town yesterday I saw that nearly all the charity shops had notes in their windows asking for unwanted gifts. It’s great that we have the option to take them there but an organised event like the Wichtelsonntag sounds like a lot more fun!

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