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Parade cancellation possible: Storm could upset plans for Bonn's Rose Monday Parade

Parade cancellation possible : Storm could upset plans for Bonn's Rose Monday Parade

A low-pressure system is on its way into the region and will bring stormy winds on Rose Monday. The parade festival committee will decide at the last moment whether the Bonn Rose Monday procession will take place or not.

It was three years ago the last time storm warnings threatened to put a damper on Rose Monday parades. Carnival cities such as Düsseldorf and Mainz cancelled their parades in 2016 while Bonn parade director Axel Wolf gave the go ahead for the procession only at 12 noon. Once again this year, he will be meeting with meteorologists shortly before that time to make a decision as to whether the parade will take place or not. So far the forecast for Monday is still very uncertain. "From the North Sea a storm low is approaching the Rhineland. We expect gusts of wind of about 70 to 80 kilometers per hour", Michael Klein from donnerwetter.de reports.

The Bonn carnival committee cooperates with the weather service in making the decision. It looks like late morning, midday and early afternoon could be affected by the storm. However, Klein points out that the forecast continues to evolve. "A decision should only be made shortly before the last possible chance to cancel it," he advises.

Until Friday morning, the expert was still optimistic, especially as the forecast fluctuated. However, this changed in the late afternoon. "I am pessimistic, but hopeful," said Klein. The reason: the forecasting models had changed for the worse. Basically, however, the situation in Bonn was less dramatic than in Cologne or Düsseldorf. In Bonn, there is a more favorable set-up location and not such tall floats. "It is possible that the gusts of wind will sweep through the Rhineland early in the morning and fade away with the Rose Monday procession.” The weather is not unusual for the beginning of March.

Axel Wolf was cautious about making any predictions right now, saying that on Sunday they would expect to have a better idea of what the weather would hold for Monday. The spokesman of the festival committee, Ralf Birkner, sees it the same way and adds that in case of doubt, safety always comes first.

In the history of Bonn carnival parades, there have been few cancellations. A huge storm surge in Hamburg in 1962 caused Bonn to cancel, and a storm in 1990. The third cancellation came in 1991 because of the Gulf War, when many other dates in the carnival calendar were cancelled as well.

On Rose Monday of 2016 it rained five liters per square meter in the morning, which was the record in February. In the afternoon the sun came out and lasted 2.8 hours. The wind increased to 63 kilometers per hour by 2 p.m.

Representatives of the festival committee, the police, the fire department and the city's security service belong to a coordination group that will meet on Monday morning in the situation headquarters of the fire department. All security measures related to the parade will be closely coordinated there, the city announced, including a look at the forecasts of the German weather service.

It could also happen, however, that the parade will start as planned, but the horses of several guards will not be allowed to start the parade. Thomas Janicke, commander of the Bonn Guard of Honor, thinks this case is rather unlikely. If the parade is cancelled in the end, the question arises as to what will happen with all the goodies purchased. Janicke says that his corps would give them to children's homes.

The Bonn Rose Monday procession starts at 12 noon on Rabinstraße and then moves from Thomas-Mann-Straße via Münsterplatz and Markt through the city center and old town. The parade will be broadcast live on kamelle.de from 12:15 pm.

Orig. text: Nathalie Dreschke, Richard Bongartz
Translation: ck