Walter Ulbricht and Erich Honecker action figures. (Yes, they were clearance items.) I have more than enough East German memorabilia at home, so I pay more attention to the food rather than the gift-y items. The chicken corn soup with rivels made and sold by the Hartley Township Volunteer Fire Department is reason enough to go to the Christkindl Market. If Calvin Trillin were to taste that soup he would seriously consider joining a hunting camp in Hartley Township just to have a regular source of the stuff.
Mr. Sticky (or would that be Mr. Stickys, since there is no apostrophe?) is the former brother-in-law of Mrs. Moist, the maker of Homemade Pennsylvania Dutch Style Intimate Wipes.
The folks in Mifflinburg clearly are serious about their buns. You do not want to make Mr. Sticky--or the trenchermen behind you--mad by slowing down the line. I noted that low calorie is not one of the bun options.
It's not just the sweet, but there is plenty of savory, too. Unlike the sticky buns, the scrapple sandwich does not come with ordering instructions.
I think the penguin has had enough Hungarian Goulash. The Gabor sister working behind the counter is taking a break to get married or attend a Green Acres reunion, or maybe both.
The rolling electric Christmas tree is one of my favorite parts of the festival. It cruises through the Christkindl market playing Christmas tunes, acting like a cross between Cousin It from The Addams Family and a Fraser Fir. It was on the fritz (I couldn't resist that not exactly pro German metaphor) when I first walked by. Since I was a friendly and available guy (well, not emotionally available, but we didn't get into that), one of the women trying to get it moving asked me to go inside the tree and to jiggle two wires together to jump start it. There is a hidden hatch on the side of the tree, and it opens a bit like an Mercury space capsule. Unfortunately I am neither an arborist nor a mechanic, and I wasn't able to get the sap (or the motor) up and running. Someone on the festival committee came by not too long after me and in a jiffy the tree was back to its bright and musical old self.
This is actually a giant gingerbread man at once of the entrance gates. Even the Festival's decorations look like something tasty to nibble on.
The strudel was warm, flaky, and tasty, just as Sergeant Schultz always imagined it to be.
The residents of Mifflinburg living near the Christkindl Market decorate for the holidays, too. There are luminaria sprinkled liberally along the town's side streets. Lots of buildings have electric candles in the windows, and there is the occasional house with a little bit of everything: a Santa, a Nativity scene, an inflatable snowman, and some candy canes, just for good measure. Then there are the decorations that I couldn't figure out, like this one. I don't know about you, but my takeaway from the Mifflinburg Christkindl Market will always be that there is no place like gnome for the holidays.