Edelweiss is an alpine flower that grows throughout this region usually at altitudes from around 5000 to 8000 feet. The plant is a perennial from a scientific standpoint, but from a cultural and mythological standpoint it is revered as a love charm, a medicinal wonder-flower and a Talisman to ward against evil spirits.
Well, most people from St. Wolfgang certainly do not dress like this guy, but on certain occasions you'll find that locals will dress in traditional clothes, such as lederhosen and this Styrian hat worn by this guy.
The composer Ralph Benatzky helped to make St. Wolfgang famous when he produced his most famous work "Im Weissen Rossl am Wolfgangsee" in 1896. The play is set in the town's lakeside hotel, The White Horse Inn and is still performed in St. Wolfgang to this day.
You'll see this plaque in his honor at the hotel itself and there is another one down by the water's edge on the western side of town.
Story of St Wolfgang
The story goes that St Wolfgang came here to seek peace and tranquillity. He gained a reputation for good works among the local which upset the devil who tried to kill him by tearing bits off the mountains and hurling them at him. The devil failed several times in this mission and eventually gave up on killing Wolfgang, offering instead to help him build a church on condition that he could have the soul of the first pilgrim who came to the church. Wolfgang agreed and the church was completed within a day. The devil waited patiently but nobody turned up. Come evening though a large wolf ambled up and walked through the door. Wolfgang fulfilled his promise and the devil, furious, disappeared forever but the church remains.
This plaque, entailing the history of St Wolfgang is just near the church
..and the band played on...
Being a lake district St Wolgang gets its fair share of rain - oerhaps more! Even so come rain or shine the custonmary village brass band will play in teh town centre each week in the season -just near the White Horse Inn.
They must be good beacause so many people stood in the rain to listen to them.
Sankt Wolfgang's economy
The economy of Sankt Wolfgang depends heavily on tourism. In fact, this is their largest industry. Because of the small size of the town, there's really not much more room for anything else. However, many of the fields at the base of the surrounding mountains, and the mountain area itself, has been set aside for farming. So to some degree, farming has some importance as well. So, help the wonderful people of Sankt Wolfgang out by stopping by for a weekend visit and eating all the dairy and produce you can fit into your tummy!
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There's a shop just above the main square in St. Wolfgang that has these faces carved into tree trunks. I don't know that there's any cultural significance here, but they are interesting to look at.
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