Turning Worries into Flames At Alpenfest’s Burning of the Boogg

Alpenfest kicked off Tuesday in Gaylord for its 54th year.

And Tuesday night was the Alpenfest tradition of burning worries away.

Alpenfest officially started with the bell ringing Tuesday evening, and the rest of the week is packed with events.

The boogg represents tradition at the Alpenfest in Gaylord.

“The boogg is a big wooden man, I guess you could say and the purpose of him is every year at Alpenfest everybody that attends, we encourage them to write down all their worries or concerns or negative things in their life on a little piece of paper and they put it in the boogg and we send it up in flames,” says Taylar Akin, executive director of Gaylord Chamber of Commerce

“I put in some worries for some friends of mine who live out of town who grew up here and they said I hope someone in town can do this for us. Their worries were one of them was to get their house done and their work done and another was just a lot of world peace stuff,” Cindy Fitzgerald, daughter of Alpenfest founder said.

“I think that mine is going to be releasing negativity, so if it’s something bad just let it go,” Akin said.

The legend of the boogg is that it symbolizes winter to Swiss people and the burning means the beginning of spring, but for the alpine village, the boogg has taken on a new meaning.

“There is so much tradition. Just again the community coming together the singing of aidal vice, that’s a big deal and just the camaraderie it’s just a wonderful festival a lot of people come down but it’s really a great town and a wonderful community,” Fitzgerald said.