This month’s city inspiration is Hückelhoven’s “Haldenzauber”, which will transform a popular summer walking space known as Millicher Halde into a family-friendly light festival over the holiday season.
A space with an interesting history
What’s interesting about the location is its evolution over the last century. Millicher Halde used to be a coal mine, and from 1936 until the 1960s, 10.6 million m³ of material was extracted and deposited next to the pit of the former “Sophia-Jacoba” colliery (which today is virtually in the middle of the city). In the late 1960s / early 1970s, when the mining came to an end, the area was reclaimed, redesigned with roads and paths, cultivated and turned into a green space, with over 136,000 trees and shrubs being planted over the years.
Attracting visitors in the winter months
This much-beloved green space becomes quiet over the winter season, and when MK Illumination began talking to Hückelhoven’s City Marketing department about festive lighting, an idea emerged that would combine festive lighting, local history and the power of storytelling to transform Millicher Halde into a magical light-filled space called “Haldenzauber”.
The aim? To offer visitors a unique experience that can be shared with others, something that is family-friendly, and that connects with all the senses. Whilst attracting visitors from across Europe is a nice-to-have, both MK Illumination and Hückelhoven wanted to create an experience that would engage the emotions of residents and people living near Hückelhoven. The result is a unique event sure to delight locals and non-locals alike.
The project is in its final stages but it promises to over-deliver: lights and light sculptures designed and produced by MK Illumination will draw the eye; interactive features built into light artworks will invite touch; the sounds and smells of crisp night will surround visitors; and fabulous food trucks will be on hand to tickle the taste buds.
Overwhelmingly positive response
Marketing started in mid-September and the demand for tickets has been phenomenal. With just over 7 weeks to go until Haldenzauber starts, it’s clear that the event will be a success, and the positivity in the press indicates that the idea has been well-received in all quarters.
“The Haldenzauber is a wonderful idea to inspire guests to visit the region in winter. Events like the Light Park fascinate people and give the Lower Rhine even more to offer.”
– Martina Baumgärtner, Managing Director Niederrhein Tourismus GmbH
“The Haldenzauber in Hückelhoven is a magical place like no other: a historic mine dump that temporarily becomes a light trail. A magical chamber of light, in the middle of nature. Place making at its best. This attraction is significant for tourism in the region as it extends the tourist season and it adds to the identity of the region, too. Thanks to the Haldenzauber, Millicher Halde as the potential to become a new icon.”
– Andreas Reiter, ZTB Vienna Office for the Future.
Exciting weeks ahead
Over the coming weeks, we’ll be telling you more about this project and how we’re bringing it to life. In the meanwhile, you can learn more and buy tickets for the event at www.haldenzauber.de or follow their Facebook page for news and updates.
Haldenzauber will begin on November 26th, 2018, and will end on January 6th, 2019.
Let us help you transform your city, public space or local place
If you want to create an extraordinary experience that captures the essence of your city, public space or an unusual local space, and that attracts visitors from far and wide, we’re full of good ideas. Get in touch to arrange a time to talk about how we can use light, decoration and innovation to bring your space to life.