Once Only

„At this ancient event, taking place in the same structure for almost 500 years, women were only invited to participate since 2014.“

Once only

For centuries the city of Bremen has had a strong economy. The hanse town was easily accessible from overseas and could tie strong bonds with business partners. For more than 500 years Bremen has had one special day where the old town hall becomes the venue for people of money and power. The "Schaffermahlzeit" is the oldest traditional fraternity dinner in the world. Back in the days it was created to bring together ship captains and owners, nowadays business men from all over the country and sometimes the rest of the world , gather for one day to catch up and tie new bonds. Being invited there is a great honor and a once in a lifetime experience. Simply because you are only allowed to take part once. Wearing a tailcoat is a must and even though we live in the 21st century, no women are allowed during the whole event. During the "walk of the penguins" (that is when the men walk from venue A to venue B) their wives gather at the side waving at their men chatting with each other. The dinner itself starts at exactly 14.36 and takes several hours with a strict time schedule. During that time the 300 guests sit in long rows in the city hall while the women have dinner next door, following the whole event on a big screen TV. Each guest is only invited to this event once in a lifetime. Only the three organizers that change every year will have a life long visiting right.

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