Whether high calibre cultural or sporting events, unusual music and garden festivals, exciting family events or traditional folk festivals with an appeal extending way beyond the region itself, Osnabrück District always has something to celebrate. Numerous event highlights attract thousands of visitors every year.
Easter Lights at the battlefield
One proverbial star in the events scene is the spectacular Easter Lights with colourful fireworks illuminating the site of the legendary Battle of the Teutoburg Forest at Kalkriese at Easter. Breathtaking pyrotechnics take visitors big and small on a journey of discovery to the dramatic battle that took place in the year 9 AD. Alternating with the splendid Easter Lights in Kalkriese are the Roman and Teuton Days that give young and old an opportunity to delve into the ancient world. Something completely different is Osnabrück’s hobby horse race: every year it takes visitors back to another historical era. The traditional event is held every autumn with children riding on hobby horses right through the city centre to remind them of the Peace of Westphalia.
Music and parties: the May Week
Year after year, the city centre is the venue for the May Week, which has become an established feature in the diary not just for music fans. Every spring, hundreds and thousands of people flock to the open-air event that lasts for several days. They come to attend live concerts of local heroes as well as popular bands and well-known performing artists. This is when the city turns into a huge party mile. Whether blues, rock, pop or folk, there is always something for everyone. Since 2005, Osnabrück’s “Oriental Festival” has been making a completely different kind of sound to attract visitors from near and far. At the same time, it also acts as a platform for cultural and artistic exchange and interaction.
The region also has other musical highlights on offer: since 1994, Bersenbrück in the north of the district has hosted the Reggae Jam which has repeatedly been declared to be Germany’s best Reggae festival. Fans of folk traditions on the other hand just love the Folk Spring held in Venne since 1999, with numerous international folk musicians performing at various dates in Ostercappeln-Venne. Music fans also get their money’s worth at the Quakenbrück Music Days or Artland Music Summer.
Highlights for garden lovers
The unique natural countryside between Wiehen Hills and the Teutoburg Forest provides a unique setting for garden events. Just one of the reasons why Osnabrücker Land has hosted the State Horticultural Show twice already, in Bad Essen in 2010 and in Bad Iburg just recently in 2018. This brought the town a new tourist attraction: the tree-top path. With a length of nearly 600 metres, it offers constantly changing views of Iburg castle and the forest spa park from airy heights. The tree-tops keep on changing colour in the course of the year, tempting nature lovers to come more than once.
On the other hand the international equestrian scene meets every year at the renowned “Horses & Dreams” festival. Successful dressage riders and show jumpers compete at Hof Kasselmann in Hagen a.T.W.
There’s lots going on in Osnabrück District all year round, so it’s worth taking a look in the diary, and not just for the theatres and cultural institutions. From the south of the district via the town of Melle through to Artland in the north, there’s always plenty to celebrate, including the traditional markets with cultural treasures and immeasurable hospitality on display, or at the festivals in the Spa Gardens of Bad Rothenfelde and the “Festival of 1,000 Flares” in Bad Laer. Not to be missed: the many lovely Christmas markets in the region. The winter season gets off to a good start with a special highlight, which is the Martins Market at Hof Groneick in Gehrde. After all, the winter months also offer plenty of opportunities to get to know the magical aspects of the region.