FASC Weekend at Parkhotel Schloss Münchenwiler

The 2016 FASC weekend just outside Murten may not have attracted many members but what a lovely weekend it turned out to be! The hotel is gorgeous – a real castle with chapel, in its own grounds, beautifully converted with a fascinating mixture of the original stone fabric and highly modern glass and metal structures where needed.

Diehard weekenders who booked in for the Friday night enjoyed a very pleasant meal in the restaurant getting to know each other, reserving their energy for the Saturday programme – a guided tour round Murten in the morning, followed by a wine-tasting at the Cave Guillod in Praz across the lake in the afternoon. The American lady who gave us the tour was one of the most informative and entertaining guides I’ve ever come across; did you know that Murten was on a trade route going through this area in pre-Roman times? And they were growing vines even then – a fitting prelude to the afternoon’s activity.

Four brave souls took the walk through the vineyards to Praz while the rest  took the boat across the lake. The Vully wines of course were excellent (I’ve often wondered exactly where Vully is), and tasting them in the dark Guillod cellar concentrates the mind wonderfully. After that it was back by boat around the lake: unfortunately the weather was cloudy and cool, so we couldn’t sit on deck to admire the view which is apparently splendid when it’s fine and sunny, but sat inside drinking coffee or tea instead.

That evening the castle was full: as well as our gala dinner/dance in the restaurant, there was a wedding party in the big reception room upstairs – not surprising in this beautiful location! 3H0 people, including members of ASC Fribourg who were there just for the day, enjoyed an excellent three-course dinner and some informal dancing to the music of S26 – an unusual combination of vibraphone, keyboard and double-bass. Our traditional raffle was really good – lots of splendid prizes including a voucher donated by the hotel for a night in the one of the guest rooms in the castle itself.

The official part of the evening was short and sweet: the presentation of the Maisie Bienz Cup to the club that’s done most to achieve FASC’s aims during the past year. It seems it’s becoming a tradition to give it to the club organizing the weekend, so it was duly awarded to this year’s organizer, ASC Fribourg, who did an excellent job (the fact they couldn’t order sunny weather is neither here nor there).

The following day, we could have gone to watch the 17 km Murten-Fribourg run, which attracts top runners from all over the world, but as far as I know none of us took advantage of the opportunity! It seemed more attractive to return home in leisurely fashion, still under the spell of a lovely convivial weekend together. Many thanks to Hartmut Menzel, Nigel Coombs and their team for the excellent organization, and for providing a very useful shuttle service. Truly a weekend to remember.

We are grateful to our sponsors - Schloss Münchenwiler, Bräuerei Haldemann and Papiliorama for the prizes donated to the Raffle, to add to those provided by the host club.

Anitra Green

Autumn weekend 2016