I work for a school district in a suburb of Houston that was settled by German families in the mid 1800’s. Relatives of the first German immigrants continue to live and thrive in the area. Probably the most famous great-great-great grandchild of the original settlers is Lyle Lovett. I understand that he is still a member of the Lutheran church choir. I also have heard that Julia Roberts, when married to Lyle Lovett, stopped traffic on the highway when she walked out to the mailbox to collect the mail.
Anyway…the community is very proud of its heritage, so to honor its roots the school district hosts a Germanfest every February. 2010’s was last Friday night. Part of my job is to chair the Germanfest committee.
It rotates among the different high schools in the district. The German teachers are the emcees.
Frauleins from each German club are on hand to take the tickets for dinner and to greet the guests.
An authentic German meal is served in the school cafeteria followed by a program in the auditorium. If you like polka music, this is the place to be! A favorite was The Chicken Dance. I’ll have to bring Katie next year. Ha!
One of the most important parts of the program is the roll call of families. Each family’s name is called and representatives from that family are recognized. It is amazing to me that elderly people come from all over just so that they can stand when their family’s name is called.
The choir from the Lutheran church, an elementary choir, and a high school men’s chorus also are on the program. Everything has to be spoken and sung in German. This is the church’s youth choir.
It was followed by the elementary choir. I didn’t get a picture of the men’s choir.
A retired teacher from the district wrote a book about the history of the area entitled Deep Roots, Strong Branches. I think that pretty well sums it up.