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Beginner's guide to Germany's shooting festivals

Kate MüserJune 30, 2017

They're more about the parades, uniforms, beer and oompah music than about weapons. Germany's largest shooting festival in Hanover runs from June 30 through July 9.

Schützenfest Hannover, Copyright: picture-alliance/dpa/P. Lux
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/P. Lux

In a time when tragic shootings made headlines all too frequently, Germany prides itself on its strict gun laws. Nevertheless, it does have a longstanding tradition of shooting festivals. The events - organized by clubs around the country - date back centuries and are a demonstration of local patriotism. Of course, there's also no shortage of beer, food and live music. With the country's largest shooting festival, the Schützenfest Hanover, opening in early July, we present a short guide to this curious German tradition.