Feistritz an der Gail

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Feistritz an der Gail
Noetsch mit Dobratsch 20052007 01.jpg
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Feistritz an der Gail
Location within Austria
Coordinates: 46°34′N13°36′E / 46.567°N 13.600°E / 46.567; 13.600 Coordinates: 46°34′N13°36′E / 46.567°N 13.600°E / 46.567; 13.600
Country Austria
State Carinthia
District Villach-Land
Government
   Mayor Dieter Mörtl
Area
[1]
  Total19.34 km2 (7.47 sq mi)
Elevation
638 m (2,093 ft)
Population
 (2018-01-01) [2]
  Total627
  Density32/km2 (84/sq mi)
Time zone UTC+1 (CET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
9613
Area code 04256
Website www.feistritz-gail.or.at

Feistritz an der Gail (Slovene : Bistrica na Zilji) is a town in the district of Villach-Land in Carinthia in Austria. It is close to the borders with both Italy and Slovenia. The Black Forest to the south of the town borders the Italian comune of Tarvisio, in the Province of Udine. There are several landmarks of importance in and around the town, including Ulli's Herb Garden, the House of Bats, the Parish Church of St. Martin and Mary Magdalene's Chapel.

Contents

Geography

Feistritz, the largest community in the Lower Gail Valley, [3] covers an area of some 20 km2 (7.7 sq mi). It is located at an elevation of 638 m (2,093 ft). [4] The town's population, as of 2012, was 649. The forest to the south bordering Italy is named Schwarzwald, meaning Black Forest. Nötsch im Gailtal is located approximately 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to the north of Feistritz an der Gail. [3] The nearby Feistritzer Alm reaches a height of 1,700 m (5,600 ft) at the foot of the Oisternig (2,052 m (6,732 ft)). [5] [6]

History

The first documented reference to Feistritz is to be found in a deed from 1119. Breeding of Noriker horses began in the 14th century as the marshy land resulting from the Dorbatsch landspill in 1348 was unsuitable for cattle. The inhabitants of the Gail Valley are known for their courage and sense of business, acquired over centuries of trade, as they transported goods from Italy to Salzburg and Bavaria. Under the rationalization of Austrian municipalities in 1973, the former Municipality of Feistritz became part of the Municipality of Hohenthurn. [7]

Economic developments

Farming is the main economic activity with small to medium-sized holdings although many of the commune's inhabitants commute to Villach or Klagenfurt. [7] In recent years, the town has placed considerable emphasis on infrastructure development such as improving the road network and the water supply while encouraging new businesses which have provided 50 new jobs. [8]

As part of the economic development of the town, a small hydroelectric project was taken over by the municipal government in 2007, with funds provided as grants and subsidies by Carinthia. This has resulted in an increase in environmental-friendly production by nearly 200%, compared to the earlier capacity of the station. This has also enabled to house the threatened species of bats on the first floor of the power station, a unique development in Austria. Commenting on the economic benefit of the scheme, mayor of the town, Dieter Mörtl, has observed that "energy on the spot saves transportation!" [9]

Landmarks

Parish church Saint Martin at Feistritz on the Gail Feistritz an der Gail Pfarrkirche hl Martin 20052007 01.jpg
Parish church Saint Martin at Feistritz on the Gail

Feistritz is known for its Fledermaushaus (House of Bats), the first in Austria. Located some 2 km to the west of the village, the old power station which was uninhabited for a number of years now houses a colony of small horseshoe bats which can be observed inside the building. [10]

There are several other landmarks of note in the town. These include:

Culture

The annual Kermesse on Whit Monday. Ritt zum Kufenstechen.jpg
The annual Kermesse on Whit Monday.

Extensive ethnographic research has occurred over a period of 460 years. [14] The commune is keen to support music, culture and folklore. The recently established School of Music has been a success, especially with the younger members of the community. [8] There is also a kindergarten school. Local art is encouraged and social clubs are also established. Hallo Feistritz is the commune's local information sheet published about twice a year. [15]

The most popular cultural activity in the town is called the "Kufenstechen", which is a customary church parish festival among the Alpine farming community. This annual event, held on Whit Monday, is celebrated in the month of May and marks the participation of unmarried men riding bareback on Noriker horses, wearing traditional costumes. The event involves horse riders striking a wooden barrel with an iron club till the last wooden splinter is felled; [16] [17] this involves several rounds of horse riding around the barrel till it is broken fully. The winner is given a flower wreath, which he wears on his wrist. This festival is said to be observed since 1630 AD. After the horse ride, a traditional dance festival is held under a lime tree (called the "Linde Dance") with the winner of the horse event getting the first dance. Unmarried girls participate in the dance dressed in traditional "Gailtaler" costumes. The dance is accompanied by traditional songs, some in Slovenian. [16] [17] [18]

The Feistritz Festival is an important event for the parish. Boys and girls practice the event's dances weeks before it starts. The dances performed are the Linde dance, polka and waltz. The boys also practice horse riding and the girls flaunt their colourful hand made costumes. [16] The parish also holds the annual "Maypole celebration" on the occasion of the Austrian independence day on 10 October. [16]

Related Research Articles

Carinthia State in Austria

Carinthia is the southernmost Austrian state or Land. Situated within the Eastern Alps, it is noted for its mountains and lakes. The main language is German. Its regional dialects belong to the Southern Bavarian group. Carinthian Slovene dialects, forms of a South Slavic language that predominated in the southeastern part of the region up to the first half of the 20th century, are now spoken by a small minority in the area.

Slovenska Bistrica Town in Slovenia

Slovenska Bistrica is a town south of Maribor in eastern Slovenia. It is centre of the Municipality of Slovenska Bistrica, one of the largest municipalities in Slovenia. Traditionally the area was part of the Styria region. The town is included in the Drava Statistical Region.

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Noriker horse breed

The Noriker horse, also called the Norico-Pinzgauer and historically known as the Pinzgauer horse, is a moderately heavy Austrian draught horse breed. The Noriker is considered indigenous to the central Alpine region of Europe, and is believed to have originated around the highest mountain of Austria, the Grossglockner. This region was once known as the Roman province of Noricum. At the end of the 19th century the original name Pinzgauer horse was changed to Noriker horse, due in part to the Romanophile attitude in this time.

Rennweg am Katschberg Place in Carinthia, Austria

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Arriach Place in Carinthia, Austria

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Bad Bleiberg Place in Carinthia, Austria

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Finkenstein am Faaker See Place in Carinthia, Austria

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Nötsch im Gailtal Place in Carinthia, Austria

Nötsch im Gailtal is a market town in the district of Villach-Land in the Austrian state of Carinthia.

Paternion Place in Carinthia, Austria

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Slizza river

The Slizza (Italian) or Gailitz is an Alpine torrent in Italy and Austria, a right tributary of the Gail river.

The Freedom Party in Carinthia was a political party in Austria, operating in the federal state of Carinthia.

South German Coldblood Breed of draught horse from southern Germany

The South German Coldblood is a breed of draught horse from southern Germany. It is distributed mainly in Bavaria. It is the most numerous of the four principal German draught horse breeds – the others being the Black Forest Horse, the Rhenish German Coldblood and the Schleswig Coldblood – and is the only one not listed as endangered by the FAO or by the Gesellschaft zur Erhaltung alter und gefährdeter Haustierrassen, the German national association for the conservation of historic and endangered domestic animal breeds.

Slovene quintain

Slovene quintain is a traditional Slovene mounted folk game, a form of jousting, that has been preserved in the southern Austrian state of Carinthia. It is held during Kirchweih festivals in the lower Gail Valley, where it has become a major tourist attraction. The štehvanje competition has also taken place every year in Savlje, Ljubljana and sometimes in neighboring villages since the 1930s.

References

  1. "Dauersiedlungsraum der Gemeinden Politischen Bezirke und Bundesländer - Gebietsstand 1.1.2018". Statistics Austria. Retrieved 10 March 2019.
  2. "Einwohnerzahl 1.1.2018 nach Gemeinden mit Status, Gebietsstand 1.1.2018". Statistics Austria. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  3. 1 2 Baedeker, Karl (1907). The Eastern Alps including the Bavarian Highlands, Tyrol, Salzburg, Upper and Lower Austria, Styria, Carinthia, and Carniola: handbook for travellers (Public domain ed.). K. Baedeker. pp.  510. Retrieved 14 February 2013.
  4. "Gemeinde: Feistritz an der Gail" Archived 2013-06-01 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  5. 1 2 "Feistritzer Alm" Archived 2012-05-29 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  6. "Oisternig (2052m) von Feistritz/Gail, Karnische Alpen", gipfeltreffen.at. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  7. 1 2 "Feistritz an der Gail: Allgemeine Informationen" Archived 2015-01-05 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  8. 1 2 "Infrastruktur" Archived 2013-06-02 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  9. "Kleinwasserkraftwerk in Feistritz an der Gai" (in German). Klimabuendnis. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  10. "1. Österreichisches Fledermaushaus" Archived 2010-12-13 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  11. "Ullis Kräutergarten", Bergfex.at (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  12. "Pfarrkirche Hl. Martin" Archived 2012-05-29 at the Wayback Machine , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  13. "Filialkirche Maria Magdalena (Kapala)" Archived 2012-05-29 at the Wayback Machine . Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  14. Brudner, Lilyan A. and Douglas R. White. 1997. Class, Property and Structural Endogamy: Visualizing Networked Histories. Theory and Society 25(2):161-208. Reprinting - Feistritz_an_der_Gail.
  15. "Gemeindezeitung" Archived 2013-04-03 at Archive.today , Feistritz an der Gail. (in German) Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  16. 1 2 3 4 "Kirchtag mit Kufenstechen und Lindentanz" (in German). Feistritz-gail.gv. Archived from the original on 2 February 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  17. 1 2 "Austrian village celebrations". Reuters.com. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
  18. "Image of horse riding festival". Wikicommons. Retrieved 12 February 2013.