Cullman’s Christkindlmarkt: German winter wonderland in the heart of Alabama!


CULLMAN, Ala. – As winter cloaks Cullman, an old-world charm takes over the streets, bringing with it the magical aura of the Cullman Christkindlmarkt. It’s not just a market, but a timeless journey that traces its origins to the heart of Germany.

“The Cullman Christkindlmarkt, a traditional German Christmas market, adds a touch of old-world charm to our community, tracing its roots back to the Middle Ages,” said Cullman Parks, Recreation & Sports Tourism Executive Director Nathan Anderson. At its core is the “Christkind,” a traditional Christmas gift-bringer of Germany, painting a picture of a cultural festivity where locals gather under twinkling lights, surrounded by festive decorations, delightful cuisine and unique gifts.

The introduction of Christkindlmarkt is no random occurrence. Beyond the festive stalls and cheery music, the market serves as a multifaceted symbol. It celebrates Cullman’s 150th anniversary, promotes the city’s proud German heritage and provides a robust platform for local businesses.

“The full-scale launch of Christkindlmarkt had multiple key objectives: celebrating Cullman’s 150th anniversary, promoting our German heritage and encouraging local shopping to support our businesses,” Anderson elaborated. With beautifully adorned huts displaying handcrafted treasures and the tantalizing aroma of bratwurst, flammkuchen, chimney cakes, mulled wine and hot chocolate wafting in the air, Anderson said the market guarantees an unforgettable experience.

But Christkindlmarkt isn’t the only highlight. As night descends upon Cullman, the city is awash in the festive glow of Christmas lights. Rooftops glisten, streets shine and the community spirit is palpable.

“Celebrating Christmas in Cullman at night is a special experience,” Anderson said, pointing out the beautifully decorated downtown and the remarkable tree lighting production. “This event is important for our community, offering an opportunity to come together, enjoy the festive atmosphere and create cherished memories with family and friends.”

Every year, the market introduces some fresh surprises, ensuring residents have something new to look forward to. This year, Christkindlmarkt has found a new, captivating home inside the freshly renovated Depot Park.

Anderson revealed, “We’re featuring an even taller German Christmas Pyramid, a warming tent, an expanded kids’ craft area and a wider variety of photo opportunities with Christmas characters. And let’s not forget the ice skating rink, carousel and the extensive assortment of authentic German food!”

At the heart of it all, the market champions a spirit of community and tradition. “The Christkindlmarkt is fundamentally about fostering a deep sense of community and tradition,” Anderson stressed, sharing pride about how nearly three-quarters of the Cullman Christkindlmarkt booths are occupied by locals. The market isn’t just a venue but a testament to the unity and collective strength of Cullman’s community.

With the unwavering support of local merchants, artisans, generous sponsors, visionary city leaders and numerous nonprofit organizations, Cullman’s Christkindlmarkt stands as a beacon of what’s possible when a community comes together. It’s more than just a market; it’s a tradition, a celebration and a reflection of Cullman’s heart and soul, something Anderson and his team take immense pride in bringing to life each year.

The Cullman Christkindlmarkt is open Thursdays-Sundays, Nov. 24-Dec. 23.

Thursdays from 4-9 p.m. Friday-Saturday 11 a.m.-9 p.m. and Sundays noon-8 p.m.

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