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359 Days until our festival of German Christmas December 5 to 8, 2019

2017 Winners!

2017 Winners

1st Prize: Anne Thomson, Kitchener ON 

2nd Prize: George Dekker, Kingsville, ON

3rd Prize: Rod Ruehle, Kitchener ON



1st Prize Winner - $1,000 Via Rail Voucher

Anne Thomson, Kitchener, Ontario

"How surprised I am and how much I appreciate being the winner of the Kitchener Christkindl Market $1,000 VIA Rail travel voucher! I am a resident of downtown Kitchener and love living here.. When I need to go further afield in the KW area I use the GRT and cannot wait for the LRT to come into service.

My family live about 5 hours away, when I visit them I only travel there by VIA Rail. I have a Preference Points card and am on VIA's email list so receive updates and special seat sales. I must say that when I travel the 401 corridor by train I cannot for the life of me understand why people drive one person per car when there is such a comfortable alternative!

Prior to retirement I spent many years as a travel attendent for a Canadian company, this job allowed me the opportunity to travel and see the world. Without fail on almost every tour the clients would ask me which was my favourite country or destination to visit. There was no hesitation in my answer it was always Canada. Canada has so much to offer from the treasure we have in Newfoundland to the Prairies to the Rocky Mountains it is such a diverse country. One of my absolute favourite tours was when we left Toronto by motor coach and drove across Canada to Vancouver. The return journey was by VIA Rail what a magnificent way to see Canada. My admiration and thanks go to those heroic souls of the 19th century who put railroad tracks across Canada so that people like me can today enjoy journeys short or long in a comfortable and easy way.

I have no idea at the moment where I will travel with my VIA Rail voucher but be assured I will be "riding the rails" and enjoying every moment!

My friend and I go to the Christkindl Market every year. I'm not sure how she will take it when she hears I won the VIA Rail voucher - who knows may be we will go "somewhere" together!

Thanks you again for such a lovely surprise I truly am 'gob smacked'!!"



2016 Winners!

1st Prize Winner: Trip for 2 to Germany and a 2-night stay 

Angi Davidson, Alma, Ontario

Sponsored by: Gross Klein Investments, Priority Mecanical & Maritim Hotels

2nd Prize Winner: $2,000 VIA Rail Pass

Nino Lombardi, Woodbridge, Ontario 

3rd Prize Winner: Broil King BBQ

Harold Taylor, Sarnia, Ontario

Return to this page to see photos and read thier stories.  

Also one visitor in attendance won: a Play, Stay & Eat

Sponsored by: Drayton Entertainment (2 theatre tickets from your choice of 7 theatres) 
and Courtyard Marriott Waterloo / St. Jacobs

2015 Winners!

1st Prize Winner - 2015: $2,000 VIA Rail Pass

Winner: JoAnna Brunnenmeier, Kitchener, Ontario

I just wanted to take a quick moment to thank the Christkindl Market for my fantastic ViaRail prize win last year.  Over the summer, I had the chance to explore the Canadian Rockies with my family on Via's phenomenal "The Canadian" train. The views were amazing, the ride was smooth and the experience was unforgettable.

I also wanted to mention how great it is to have an event like Christkindl Market in KW.  From the live Nativity to the one-of-a-kind vendors and the model train display, there is something for everyone and it is a lovely community event.  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone at this year’s Market.

Thanks again,
JoAnna Brunnenmeir

Click on the photos below!

Photo L-R: Monica Reid (Chair Marketing Christkindl Market) JoAnna Brunnenmeier (Winner), Astrid Braun (President Christkindl Market)


2nd Prize Winner - 2015
$1,500 Napolean BBQ
from Priority Mechanical

Winner:
Marnie Boyd
Waterloo, Ontario

Photo L-R:
Monica Reid, Chair Marketing Christkindl Market
Marnie Boyd, Winner

3rd Prize Winner - 2015
Play, Stay & Eat

Drayton Entertainment
(2 theatre tickets, 1 of 7 theatres)

Four Points by Sheraton in Waterloo (1 overnight)
Stone Crock Restaurant in St. Jacobs

Winner:
Hermine Schuster,
Kitchener, Ontario

Photo L-R:
Monica Reid, Chair Marketing Christkindl Market
Hermine Schuster, Winner
Astrid Braun, President Christkindl Market

2015 Vincenzos Gift Basket Winners!

Thank you Vincenzo's
for 2 beautiful Christmas baskets.

The first basket was drawn by Knecht Ruprecht.
The winner was in the audience at our
Official Opening Ceremonies
Thursday, December 3, 2015.
Congratulations!


A second basket was drawn by
Christkindl Market volunteer Yvonne Heidrich.
The winner was in the audience at our
Official Closing Ceremonies
Sunday, December 6, 2015
Our young winner had been onstage twice that day
in earlier performances.
Congratulations!

2014 Winners

1st Prize Winner - 2014
$2,000 Via Rail Pass

Winner: Judy Aitcheson, Kitchener ON

"My husband and I took the first trip February 2015 with VIA Rail to and from Kitchener-Montreal for a Habs/Leafs hockey game. We found the trip to be wonderful and enjoyed the easy going train ride.

We also visited our daughter in Alberta in late September, and took the Via train from Jasper (Alberta) to Prince George (BC) and back again. This was a beautiful 2-day trip that was very very enjoyable.

Thank you so much for the treasured memories on these 2 VIA Rail train trips."

Shown (right) is Judy Aitcheson winner of the 2014 Via Rail Pass.

Below are photos from Judy's trip.


2nd Prize Winner - 2014
EAT & SLEEP & PLAY

Winner: Jason Angel, Waterloo, ON

Jason lives in Waterloo and he said he enjoyed Christkindl Market so much that he returned a few times.

Jason won a wonderful prize including:
a Sobeys, Highland Road $75 Gift Certificate,
Overnight at Four Points Sheraton, Waterloo,
and 2 Tickets to a play at Drayton Entertainment (choice of 7 theatres).

Shown here is Jason Angel (right) being presented with the winning package by Chriskindl Market president, Astrid Braun (left).

Visit again soon to see photos and read more.



Sobeys (Highland Road) Gift Basket Winners - 2014

Sarah Roundell from Guelph ON (1st time visitor and 1st time winner of a Sobeys, Highland Road gift basket)

Stephanie Rice (Winner of a beautiful Sobeys, Highland Road gift basket)

Stephanie Rice

Cyay from Waterloo, ON (Photo right) Winner of today's Sobey's (Highland Road) gift basket fully loaded with chocolates and holiday treats, was Cyay from Waterloo. She was standing beside the red ribbon in the square! Holding the basket is her father. On the left are Christkindl Market President Astrid Braun and committee member Yvonne Heidrich. See you again tomorrow when we have another basket from Sobeys, Highland Road.


Click here to see previous winners

Nice! I just moved back from living in Europe for 9 years, this was so nice!
As we entered the building, we saw so many beautiful Angels, and so many beautiful ornaments, so unique to this event that you couldn't buy them anywhere else. What a memory. My daughter and I attend this event each and every year. It's like our own tradition, just for the 2 of us. It's a night out together to bond, celebrate the holidays and of course to look for that very special Christmas ornament for this year.
Ich Liebe Christkindl Markt
Love this festival - begins Christmas!
As always, our family enjoyed the Christkindl Market so very much! Thank you for nurturing this tradition in Kitchener - we hope it keeps going for many, many years... Thank you once again for a wonderful Christmas experience our family has made part of our yearly tradition!
We love it! It gets us in the Christmas spirit!
Ich war nur mal zu einem Christkindl Markt. Das war circa 1975 in Pforzheim im Schwarzen Wald. Ich kann mich noch nach all diesen Jahren an die wunderbaren Lichter und Aromas, so wie all die schoene Musik und die Weihnachts Stimmung, ganz gut erinnern, als wenn es gestern war. Vielen Dank dass Sie diese herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland herueber gebracht haben. Ich wuenschte wir koennten jaehrlich kommen um den Christkindl Markt zu besuchen.
The joy is yours!
Wonderful Tradition!
"Homesick" for the sights, smells and sounds of Germany. I had been living in a small town in the Black Forest region while I was teaching on the Canadian Forces Base in Lahr. On my return to Stratford, I found the Kitchener Christkindl Market. Somehow, I did not feel quite as "homesick" for the sights, smells and sounds of Germany! It is a wonderful experience, one I look forward to every year.
Can you please do a candlelight precession on Friday and Saturday nights too?
Love the market, reminds me of my time living in Germany
Christmas spirit ... we'd like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival
I just want to thank the team that sets up the Christmas Tree and oversees Christkindl. What a wonderful way to spend a lunch hour! I go every year on Thursday and Friday. I LOVE it! It just lifts the spirits and is so "magical"! Thank you for such a wonderful experience, every year!
I took my daughter for the first time 5 years ago and what a special event this was for both of us. We visited the manger live nativity scene, it was beautiful. We listened to the Christmas music, I can't believe how just humming a little Christmas song can put you in such good spirits with yourself and others. Christmas is the one time of the year that people actually look at others and smile, wishing them the very best. It's a shame we can't be like this throughout the year.
Thank you all for making this German Christmas festival a reality so that we can enjoy the Christmas season and make many special memories for ourselves and more importantly for our children. To another 100 years of Christkindl Market, Kitchener! Frohe Weihnachten
"I will be there again on the Saturday to enjoy my childhood memories all over again, not to forget the food and smells of this special time."
Kindling the Christmas Spirit -I remember the first year of the Market about 10 years ago. Snow falling gently, beautiful German music playing outside, high quality Christmas goods for purchase from friendly vendors, hot-mulled cider, the nativity scene, the skaters - what atmosphere!!! The magic has hooked me ever since. So much different from the mall! Thanks for kindling the Christmas spirit.
Love it. Traditional December event we all look forward to at our house. Thanks!
Wonderful - An annual event for myself!
Every year the City Hall in Kitchener transforms into a German style Christmas Market complete with food, carollers, ice skating and lots more. This year marked the 20th anniversary of the event and it did not disappoint. City Hall was decked out with vendors, food, Christmas decorations and entertainment to convince even the meanest Grinch that this truly is the best time of the year. WONDERS OF WINTER
We absolutely love it! It's been a family tradition to go to the German Christmas market at the Toronto International Centre since I was a small child back in the 70's and 80's. Now I have children of my own and we have been coming to the Kitchener Christkindl Market for the past 10 years. We stay at a nearby bed and breakfast go to the farmers market and then the Chirstkindl. It's a beautiful weekend that we look forward to all year long. I love the whole German feel. My mother was German from Darmstadt. We grew up speaking German with all the German customs and festivities. Christmas and Nikolaus Tag were our favourites. Your Christkindl still captures that traditional German feel with the products, food, childrens/adult choir and German people. The smell of the the roasted beer nuts, bratwurst, goulash soup, saurkraut, potato pancakes and blacksmith fire in the crisp, cold winter air creates a feeling in me that I cannot explain. It really makes me and my family feel wonderful and happy. With all the craziness in today's world, it's so good to know we can disappear for a weekend in the warmth and nostalgia of the Christkindl.
Nice to preserve our cultural heritage. We really enjoyed the train room
Great Job - Christkindl Market! Saves us a trip to Germany!
Love the Market! It's my first time here and it's been awesome! Thank you!
Santa does not have to be in a red suit The Christmas spirit is alive and well in Kitchener: My four-year-old daughter; two-year-old son, my Mom and I had gone to Christkindl on Dec 7. My son was in total rapture as he looked upon a display of moving toys. To the right of me was a lady watching my son's gazing and dreamy state. The lady took a box with the toy inside and shoved it under my arm; my reaction was no, no, no. I looked at this kind-hearted lady and she said she wanted to buy it for the little guy, and that she was going to be thinking about him on Christmas morning as he unwraps his gift from her. I want her to know Santa does not have to be in a red suit with bells on and a beard. He could also be a she, a kind and special lady.
Thank you, for bringing to our community the Christkindl Market, an event that has rekindled in the hearts of so many, the wonder and joy, the excitement and awe of those memorable Christkindl Markets in Germany so many years ago. Thanks for your vision, your dream and your spirit. You make it possible for people of another age, a new generation, and varied cultures to enjoy the magic. Our hearts quicken at the sound of the fanfare at the opening ceremony and our eyes grow misty to the sweet sound of the music and song that fills the winter air...
Just like Germany! Love the organ grinder!
...we'd like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival.
As the rest of the world gallops forward, there is a tradition that keeps people in Waterloo Region firmly rooted in the past, at least during Christmas. The annual four-day Christkindl Market opens Thursday in front of Kitchener City Hall, recreating a Bavarian tradition first officially recorded in 1310. The original market, called Nikolausdult, was designed as a temporary affair constructed from wood and canvas and erected in front of a church. Visitors from far and wide would arrive to both sell and purchase items, some from other countries, giving the market an international flavour. Then in a few days, it would all disappear. "It's about tradition," she said. "That's what people are looking for." The market features vendors, selling all manner of items: German-made toys, handcrafted jewelry, art glass items, gift baskets, beeswax candles, gifts, chocolate and marzipan, original art, music, leather, hand-painted wearable art, tree decorations, music boxes and everyone's favourite, apple fritters. Christkindl Market takes over much of city hall, both inside and out, with gift vendors indoors and food outdoors on Civic Square, where they will pander to anyone with a hankering for Germanic food, including schnitzel, marinated herring and Schinken on a bun as well as the regular crowd pleasers such as sausage, potato pancakes, stollen and waffles. This is no time to go on a diet. And for those needing a rest, the 10th floor has been turned into a place to sit, relax and eat your goodies.
Love your market!!
It brings back memories of Germany during the Christmas season!
Vielen Dank dass Sie diese herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland herueber gebracht haben. Ich wuenschte wir koennten jaehrlich kommen um den Christkindl Markt zu besuchen.
It was amazing what wonders it did for us! From the lights and the music and the smells and watching everyone smiling and laughing...it instantly lifted our spirits and helped us keep them there through the whole holiday. Now we can't wait year to year for the first ads and we rush to mark it on the calendars. We always go the Friday night, no kids or friends, just us - to sit and take it all in. You don't know what you are missing until you have been there!" - Letter from
It is well organized
Christmas spirit ...we like to see all of the vendors. It's a wonderful event and my Christmas spirit doesn't begin until I attend your festival.
It is a magical experience for me as a vendor and all the visitors that attend. Everybody is happy and excited and enjoying all the events, food, atmosphere, entertainment, and the unique vendors wares. Thanks to those that had the vision to start Christkindl 20 years ago, and all that played a role over the years to making Christkindl a success.
My husband's family is German and up until we visited the Christkindl Market a few years ago I only had stories and some samplings of the different Christmas foods from Germany from his family. Until we visited your wonderful market I never really understood the fascination my husband has always had for German Christmas. Since that first visit my husband starts planning our next visit in October! He wouldn't miss it for the world and I have come to appreciate his heritage even more through experiencing this bit of Germany in Canada! Every year we bring our teenagers and invite our friends. Thank you for all your hard work - Christmas isn't Christmas for us now without the Christkindl Market!
Excellent community spirit and great event for family. Loved the food, gluhwein, apple fritters, sauerkraut..
Our family has been coming to the Christkindl Market in Kitchener for five years now. We absolutely love it there. The sights, sounds and smells really put us in the Christmas spirit. This has become a very cherished part of our Christmas traditions. Three generations of our family take part in it. What a special time is had by all. Thanks for the memories...already looking forward to next year.
Herrliche Tradition aus Deutschland - Ich war nur mal zu einem Christkindl Markt. Das war circa 1975 in Pforzheim im Schwarzen Wald. Ich kann mich noch nach all diesen Jahren an die wunderbaren Lichter und Aromas, so wie all die schoene Musik und die Weihnachts Stimmung, ganz gut erinnern, als wenn es gestern war.
Love it-part of my yearly Christmas tradition!
It is awesome! This reminds me of all of the traditional Christmas markets I saw in Germany. I loved the markets in Germany and miss them a great deal, how nice it is to relive a bit of the atmosphere here in Kitchener.
I'm now feeling the Christmas Spirit. Thank you!
I will be there again to enjoy my childhood memories all over again, not to forget the food and smells of this special time.
Think Oktoberfest, except that the beer is replaced with Christmas cheer.
The Christmas spirit is alive and well in Kitchener
Wonderful! My husband is German- was like home for him! Visiting is becoming a yearly tradition! Thanks!
If you can't be at a Christmas Market in Germany, the Christkindl Market in Oktoberfest City (Kitchener, Ontario), is the closest it can get. They even have real, hot mulled wine, a staple at every German Weihnachtsmarkt. For us, visiting the market in Kitchener was a few hours back home away from home. Very nice!
My mom has taken my brother and I to the Christkindl Market ever since it first opened. We felt surrounded by love and happiness and enjoyed being around the German community - especially because we could not be with our family in Germany at Christmas. I still remember and still feel the warm feelings I first felt when I visit the Christkindl Market. I always make sure I attend each year with my Mom and now take my daughter along as well. I hope she too will be able to attend for years to come and in the future, bring her children as well.
Beautiful. Love the nativity and ornaments. Everything ist wunderbar
My two-year-old son, was in total rapture as he looked upon a display of moving toys. A lady was watching my son's dreamy state. This kind-hearted lady said she wanted to buy it for my little guy, and that she was going to be thinking about him on Christmas morning as he unwraps his gift from her. I want her to know Santa does not have to be in a red suit with bells on and a beard. He could also be a she, a kind and special lady.

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