The German Family Society's “Kindergruppe” is a children's folkdance group presently consisting of approximately 35 girls and boys ranging in ages from 4 to 7 years. The “Kindergruppe” has weekly dance practices that are held inside the main clubhouse on Wednesday evenings at 6:30pm, typically lasting for only one hour, followed by a short social “fun-time”.
In the years past, the” Kindergruppe” has performed at many of the German Family Society's events such as the “Old European Festival”, the “Oktoberfest”, and at the German-American Day Celebration (a more formal dance held inside the ballroom). We also entertained for the club’s annual “Mother's Day” and “Christmas” programs, where the children sing and recite poems often in the German language. The “Kindergruppe” also enjoyed performing at locations other than the GFS, such as at area nursing homes, numerous church sponsored events, and even for the “Oktoberfest” at the Geauga Lake Amusement Park.
Having fun is always a priority with our “Kindergruppe”, but we also hope to teach our youth about their heritage and culture. This is accomplished not only through traditional song and dance but also with occasional German language lessons taught during our practices. We do, however, realize that the “Kindergruppe” members are very young, so we try not to overwhelm them. Currently we are instructing them in translating items like colors and numbers, and teaching them how to say “hello”, “good-bye”, and most importantly “please” and “thank-you” in the German language. Aside from dance practices, the “Kindergruppe” also sponsors many social events with parties at Valentine's Day, a traditional egg hunt at Easter with a special appearance of the “Easter-Bunny”, at Halloween we have a costume party, and at Christmas there are gifts given by our own St. Nicholas (Santa Claus).
The “Kindergruppe” accepts new members whose parents and families appreciate and understand our objectives (a child does not have to be of direct “German” decent). We realize that by instructing our children about their culture and traditions, and by socializing in a wholesome environment at a young age, we hope to instill good “family values” and an appreciation for our heritage while providing the ground work for a future model American citizen. For more information, feel free to contact our any of our group leaders or GFS Board members, or better yet, just visit at one of the “Kindergruppe” practices.