Reflections on the Love Parade (1995)
A British journalist discusses both the history and the allure of Berlin’s annual Love Parade, one of the world's largest street festivals. He asks whether it is actually a political demonstration for peace, as organizers contend, a pop phenomenon, or just a huge party fuelled by youthful exuberance and exhibitionism. The author was not alone in his questions: in 2001, German courts ruled the Love Parade a commercial – not a political – event. In 2007, the Love Parade (a registered trademark) moved from Berlin to the Ruhr region, but its problems went along with it. The Love Parade continues to be plagued by funding and organizational problems, and its impact on the environment (i.e., damage to festival grounds and post-parade clean-up) is an ongoing source of concern.