German Father's Day

➤ by Oma Gerhild Fulson

The German Father's Day, aka Vatertag, observance is so different from the Canadian and American celebration which is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of June.

Originally, during the Middle Ages, Father's Day was a religious celebration to honor God the Father. It was celebrated on Ascension Day, aka Christi Himmelfahrt, usually in May. For example, in 2010, this fell on May 13 (40 days after Easter). In 2013, on May 9. In 2015, on May 14, and in 2020 on May 21!

The German Father's Day! How do you celebrate?

Later, it did become a day to honor Dad, but soon became a day when men had a 'drinking day' where they toured the bars and pubs getting drunk. (Not a pretty picture!)

In some places it still is a day where men gather, either in parks or outings, and beer is consumed in large quantities. After having talked with some friends in Germany, it seems their recollections of Vatertag were not good. They recall a lot of drinking and drunkenness.

Now-a-day, in some areas, it is celebrated as a family recognition of Dad. Since Ascension Day is a public holiday in Germany, this provides a day to enjoy a short day-trip.

Raised in Canada after immigrating from Germany, we would celebrate Father's Day the Canadian way. Mutti  would make the foods my Papa loved the most. What was that? Rouladen and potato dumplings, of course!

Vati's favorite, beef rouladen with lots of gravy

Mutti would bake Papa's favorite torte for dessert - usually a Blitz Torte. I'm sure she liked that fact that this easy cake was his favourite.

We would make cards and give little gifts. It was always difficult to think of something Papa would like. For us, though, it was actually a double celebration. Papa's birthday was June 19 and often on the same day -- a real Father's Day for him!

So why not celebrate Dad on his special day. We'd do it on the Canadian Father's Day, the third Sunday in June. So, either in May or June, make this a day to recognize Dad for the great guy he is!

Tell Dad, "Glücklicher Vatertag." (Happy Father's Day!)


Make Dad some Beef!

There’s something absolutely mouth-watering about having a German meat-and-potato dinner. Get Oma's revised collection of her favorites in German Meat Dishes.

Take a look at Oma's German Meat Dishes eCookbook filled with traditional favorites.

Take a peek at all Oma's eCookbooks. They make sharing your German heritage a delicious adventure!

You might try these ...

Follow Oma on Social Media:

Leave a comment about this recipe or ask a question?

Pop right over to my private Facebook group, the Kaffeeklatschers. You'll find thousands of German foodies, all eager to help and to talk about all things German, especially these yummy foods. 

Meet with us around Oma's table, pull up a chair, grab a coffee and a piece of Apfelstrudel, and enjoy the visit.

Newest Recipes

  1. Oma's German Cheese Spätzle - Käsespätzle (German Mac and Cheese!)

    Cheese Spätzle is a traditional German noodle dish. A sort of Germanized version of 'Mac & Cheese', only better! Käsespätzle - YUM!

    Go to the recipe

  2. Leek and Lentil Stew with Potatoes (Vegan Recipe)

    This vegan German-style Leek and Lentil Stew with Potatoes (Linseneintopf mit Kartoffeln und Lauch) is my new favorite recipe. It's quick and easy to prepare, filling, and delicious.

    Go to the recipe

  3. Apricot Tart Recipe with Streusel ~ Oma's Aprikosen-Streusel-Tarte

    This German streusel fruit tart, Obstkuchen mit Streusel, uses either fresh or canned fruit, such as apricots, peaches, cherries. A delicious treat, just like Oma bakes.

    Go to the recipe

*  *  *  *  *

Make every day a LOVE-filled day!

"Dear friends, let us continue to tome one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love." 1 John 4:7-8 (NLT)