The village Of
The municipality of Neisseaue
Since 1995, Zodel and a further seven other villages, namely Gross – Kraushca, Neu Krauscha, Emmerichswalde, Klein Krauscha, Kaltwasser, Deschka and Zentendorf all belong to the municipality of Neisseaue, situated directly on the Lausitzer Neisse and exactly on 15° eastern latitude.
After the Second World War, the River Neisse formed the border between Germany and Poland. This now makes our village Church the most easterly Church in Germany.
After Poland joined the European Union, our municipality is now in an area, which is beginning to lose its anonymity as a result of its proximity to the border.
People with a love of nature and relaxation, in particular the bicycle tourist will enjoy the beautiful scenery
and the diversity of flora and fauna as well as the opportunity to making friendly contact with our Polish neighbours.
Getting to know the different traditions and cultures and the proverbial hospitality the expectations by our guests is definitely exceeded.
The distant view into the Oberlausitz mountainous country, the Zittauer mountain range, the Bohemian Lausitz and the Iser mountains and with optimal weather conditions one can even see the Schneekoppe give pleasure to our visitors again and again.
It is in particular the Neisse meadows with their ponds and the Zodeler “Crevice” which deserve our interest. Many species of animal come together in these biotopes. In summer, for instance, you can see white storks. The boat rides on the River Neisse are particularly delightful.
The constant change between the wide river and quiet waters to strong currents and narrow parts take one by surprise. And when you take the time to go into the woods to pick cranberries and blueberries or look for mushrooms, you will also see game.
The Second World War had a strong impact on the area. Alongside the Neisse, approximately on the level of Zodel, Gross- Krauscha and Penzig (the latter town being on the Polish side), there was heavy fighting and these towns in particular experienced severe destruction, for example Gross-Krauscha was 90% destroyed. The numerous casualties, especially the many German and Soviet soldiers, are buried in soldiers’ graveyards in Zodel, Kaltwasser and Zentendorf and the gravesites are still being looked after today.
In 1945 therefore the Neisse divided the people of the two countries – Germany and Poland. The strict border checkpoints and the absence of treaties between the DDR (German Democratic Republic – the former “East Germany”) and Poland prevented tourism and general travel to the region. A lot of time had to pass before the first friendly encounters could take place.
A visit to the Deschka with its restaurant within the bird park displaying many exotic birds is a pleasant outing. In the centre of town there is a fitness studio and the restaurant “Landei” is an ideal place to relax and enjoy oneself.
For several years already, Deschka holds its annual Brückenfest (Bridge Festival) in summer. This has now almost become a tradition. It is a meeting between Polish and German people. Dedicated residents of the German municipality of Neisseaue and the Polish municipality of Penzig organise many events and erect a “Three-Day-Bridge” over the Lausitzer Neisse with the general invitation to each and all to all to get to know their neighbour and his environment. It is a social event with sport, dancing as well as an ecumenical Church service.
On the northern border of the municipal area lies the “Cultural Island Einsiedel”, a combination of a production company, recreation park and cultural association. The company “Künstlerische Holzgestaltung Jürgen Bergmann” (woodcraft) has a staff of 40 who are always creating novel, unusual and unique items. This is where large “crazy games” are made and sent on their way to children’s nurseries, garden exhibitions, zoos and recreation centres in the whole of Europe.
The recreation park is an exciting playground for young and old. It is open from March to October and offers unique surprises both above- and underground. “Theatrum” (play on words – all about the theatre), “Night of Forbidden games” and “Spielum” (play on words – all about play) are well-known weekend events that are also visited by people from regions further afield.
The highlight of the season is the “Folklorum – Festival of the Cultures” on the first weekend in September.
Zodel is the largest village in the municipality of Neisseaue. The oldest building is the protestant church built in Gothic style. It was first mentioned in the register of the Diocese of Meissen. The church was severely damaged in the war. During the restorations in 1950, multi-coloured frescos were uncovered. This unique evidence dating from the Gothic era shows Christ with the four Evangelistic Symbols and the 12 Apostles. The late-Gothic winged altar decorated with the Saints dates back to 1504; the painted pulpit dates back to 1650, and the font, dedicated to the “beloved Church of Zodel”, is from 1750.
During the last few years the colourful Gerbera can be seen in Zodel. These beautiful flowers are from the cultivation of Peter Ambrosius, a master horticulturist from Marbach am Neckar (near Stuttgart). It was Peter Ambrosius who started the research into the name giver of the Gerbera flower, Traugott Gerber, who in 1710 was christened in Zodel and was the son of the pastor. This research has resulted in a lot of information both from Germany and abroad gathered by the many friends of the Gerbera.
The organisation “Traugott Gerber Gesellschaft” was founded in 2002, and has members from all over Germany. It is in contact with the Gerbera Association of Barberton, South Africa. The “Traugott-Gerber-Museum” in Zodel can be visited on request.
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