November 11th at 11 am in Germany marks the beginning of the Mardi Gras preparations for the next year's Karnival, and also the start of the winter holiday season with St. Martins Day, where children sing in candle lit lantern processions and afterwards enjoy a special �Bread Man�, a St. Martin Weckmann, or a candied apple alongside traditional bonfires.

As one of the most admired of the European saints St. Martin was the first who had not been martyred before being canonized, and church services are held in his honor at the start of his saints day and a traditional goose 'with all the trimmings' supper at the end, known as Martinsgans, St. Martin�s Goose.

Still not a commercialized holiday it is a very popular one, and a little like a combination of Halloween and Thanksgiving.

A St. Martins Day in Germany

Francine A. McKenna - German Culture Editor

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Avatar: HOHENZOLLERNBRÃœCKE Cologne with CATHEDRAL and LUDWIG MUSEUM. The Bridge a symbol of how Germany was rebuilt after WWII, it was left in ruins, the Cathedral with roots in the 13th century represents the country's history, Museum of Modern Art the present day.