"What should I give my loved ones for Christmas? - anyone who still has this question on their mind can be inspired by the "Give a Picnic as a Gift" campaign to coincide with the first Advent: Almost 50 city marketings, tourist information offices, producers, businesses and manufacturers from 37 places in Münsterland are packing Christmas picnic boxes with regional, local and sustainable products that can make friends, neighbours or family happy. Münsterland e.V. initiated the campaign and compiles the region's offerings on www.muensterland.com/verschenkepicknick. So far, boxes from 27 towns and communities can be found there, and more are being added all the time.
The local colour is special, because in each box the local actors show their tastiest side: the boxes with names like Winter Lights, Fireplace Magic or Starry Lights contain, for example, Christmas biscuits from the Münsterland, Christmas liqueur, almonds, jam, traditional country beer, stews and soups in jars or Westphalian pumpernickel. In addition to food, some boxes are also stocked with small picnic companions, such as cuddly socks made of alpaca wool for cosy picnics at home, mugs as well as cycling, hiking and city maps for planning the first excursion in the new year.
The picnic box itself is also a sustainable gift: the approximately 1500 copies made of German spruce wood were again handmade in the Alexian workshops in Münster. After the happy festivities, the boxes can be given away, used for transport or decoration, and even planted. Those who do not want to keep the box benefit from a deposit system in some places and can return it.
As the initiator of "Give away a picnic", Münsterland e.V. has cooperated more with the Münsterland seal this year. The Münsterland seal identifies products that are demonstrably grown, harvested, produced or refined in the region. Many of the products in the picnic boxes are labelled with the seal and stand for a sustainable Münsterland.
The picnic boxes are sold directly on site, for example in the tourist information offices or city marketing offices of the municipalities. In addition, there are farm shops, concept shops, delicatessens, unpacked food shops, bakeries and the retail trade as "box fillers" and distribution partners. An overview of who is taking part and which delicacy is in which box can be found at www.muensterland.com/verschenkepicknick.
"This is the third time that the region is packing the boxes under the motto 'Give a picnic away'," says Laura Woolfenden, project manager of the Picknick³ project at Münsterland e.V. "In Münsterland, many people identify very strongly with their region and are happy to be able to give away a good portion of home with a picnic box. Often also as a greeting to loved ones from or far away who have travelled or cannot be here locally." In addition, picnics are also a good idea to give away time together: "Especially in times of crisis, we reflect on community and are grateful for what we have. A voucher for a picnic in the New Year with your loved ones is perhaps the icing on the cake, for which we pack a template in every picnic box."
The campaign is also important economically: "Through the picnic box, people may also get to know one or two products from a local business or producer that they didn't know before," says Woolfenden. "In addition, the places benefit from new local value chains and cooperations."
For more regional gift ideas and an overview of the region's Christmas markets, visit www.muensterland.com/weihnachten. More information on picnicking in Münsterland, such as recipe ideas and special picnic spots, can be found at www.muensterland.com/picknick.
Looking ahead to summer: Münsterland Picnic Days on 17 and 18 June 2023
Picnic fans can already look forward to June 2023: that's when the Münsterland Picnic Days will take place around the International Day of the Picnic on 17 and 18 June 2023 - with large and small picnics, indoors and outdoors, in unusual places and especially with good and regional treats.
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