Chicago Christkindlmarket brings in crowds, cash

December 9, 2009 3:34:05 PM PST
Walking through the Loop, it's hard to miss the aroma of brats and schnitzel coming from Daley Plaza.About one million people visit the Christkindlmarket between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. They come for genuine German fare- from the mulled wine and beer to the food and the entertainment to shopping. Those venders spend a lot of money to get their goods to Chicago's festival.

"We feel that especially Chicago is the most authentic Christmas market here in the United States and it is worth it to be here," said Dirk Noessler, Kathe Wohlfahrt Christmas Ornaments.

More than 50 vendors set up at the Christkindlmarket; more than 30 of them are German companies. But why do they spend a month here? One reason- geld, which is money in the German language.

It's just good business- and why Herman Werner brings his sweet castle to Chicago. Chicagoans are nuts about his products.

"Business is very good," said Werner. "Yes, sure. If the weather is nice the people come out we make good money, yes."

Now don't think the venders get rich there; They don't. They have lots of expenses living in Chicago for almost two months so the schnitzel sales have to be good.

"Yeah, it's good," said Andy Eithler, The Schnitzelmeister, who said he sells "thousands" of schnitzels? and, brats by the truckload, too.


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