August, 2010. Some additional information from Andreas, of special interest to our meeting participants:
A simplified MAP of Eberswalde.
A tour pamphlet for the Barnim District in English and German, HERE.
A fascinating and relevant Washington Post article on the former "Eastern Germany", HERE.
About the meeting. What do we mean, IUFRO is "Coming Home"? Clicking on the link here "1892 Meeting" will bring you to the English translation of minutes from the meeting on Aug. 17, 1892, of the Internationale Verband forstlicher Versuchsanstalten; the proto-IUFRO forestry organization. This meeting took place in Eberswalde - perhaps in the very place you are standing at this moment. If you are standing in a bar drinking a mug of Eberswalder Pilsener (est. 1868), then this is even more likely to be true. But what about Eberswalde?
Eberswalde, 40 km (28 miles) north-east of Berlin, is located in the state of Brandenburg, surrounded by dense forests and sparkling lakes. It was founded around 1200, and the main church (Maria Magdalena) was built soon thereafter. Inside the church, several pieces date back to the 13th century, including the huge baptismal font. From the tower you can enjoy a beautiful view of the city and surrounding forests.
In the 16th century, Eberswalde developed into a town of trade and industrial production. In 1630, a canal running through Eberswalde was built to connect Berlin with the Baltic sea, and it is still used by boat tourists - those who are not afraid of the 13 locks. A boat trip along the canal offers magnificent views of the countryside and can be arranged for participants.
Just north of Eberswalde, the huge biosphere reservation “Schorfheide-Chorin” offers pristine lakes and vast forests, where you can go hiking in solitude (or get lost in the wild..). Schorfheide-Chorin used to be the hunting area for “celebrities” since the medieval times, and therefore access was very restricted for "commoners". When the monarchy in Germany disappeared, the Nazis used this remote area for the few years of their dark rule. After the end of the war and until the reunification of the two parts of Germany, the Socialist leaders of the DDR (e.g. Honecker) used to hunt here as well – and as before, no common folk were allowed to enter. Now you will have the opportunity to visit the biosphere, as Eberswalde is the gateway to this remote area of natural beauty.
Eberswalde is really a town of forestry. Even the name “Eberswalde” translates to “Wild boar forest”, and this name is justified, as you will experience if you go running early morning in the forests around our hotels! In 1830, the Forest Academy (later a faculty of the famous Berlin Humboldt-University) was moved from Berlin to Eberswalde, and the tradition of forest research and education began. It was here that the IUFRO was founded in 1898, as a union of forest research organizations. Today, besides the university of Applied Sciences, there is the State of Brandenburg Competence Center for Forestry and the Federal Institute of Forestry (for more information see: www.vti.bund.de and www.mugv.brandenburg.de).