general news

28.12.2015, 13:02 hrs
Age: 2 Year(s)

Annual Review 2015

It has been a fascinating year for the Wunderland: whilst the new theme world Italy found more and more shape with every day, many special events dominated our social calendar and also: this year we had more guests than ever before.

Already in the beginning of the year the Wunderland made the news: In January anyone who said the magic words “I can’t afford it” was granted admission free of charge. Although many saw us going bankrupt over this, we didn’t. Instead we were happy to welcome 10,000 visitors with a smaller budget to enjoy visiting the Wunderland.

It was a very special night for all of Hamburg on February 20th: Following Frederik’s and Gerrit’s invitation, 20,000 people with torches gathered around the Alster to create a beautiful image as a welcome sign for the Olympic Games in Hamburg. At the same time we reenacted the Olympic and Para-Olympic disciplines with little figurines in a beautiful Hamburg setting. You may see them here.

As every year the Wunderland enjoys a good April fool’s day. This year we had to report, that the stalks, which hold our ancient warehouse, have grown weary with all the weight and vibrations caused by the visitors they had to hold over the years. We therefore made it mandatory to wear slippers throughout the exhibition. Especially overweight people had to keep their weight evenly balanced, for instance by wearing a belt with helium balloons. Not only because of the stalks these news caused some commotion and our phones never stood still for days.

Three weeks later, on April 25th, we celebrated 5000 days of Wunderland. On this occasion we reedited and updated our big book just in time for Easter. Märklin even launched a special edition run for the event called “5,000 days of Wunderland”, dedicating one model to each of the Wunderland theme worlds: go to special runs.

A 60th birthday requires a special gift: this is why we now have the „Dorfkrug“, the local pub from the beloved NDR TV series “Neues aus Büttenwarder“ including some scenes from the series in Wunderland. Leading actor Peter Heinrich Brix, as a belated birthday gift with the press present, set his figurine into the scenery and was allowed to take a model home with him.

A dominating subject at this time was the ongoing strike of the locomotive driver’s union GDL with their leader Claus Weselsky. In our opinion the main victims of the strike were never heard: the locomotives themselves, waiting lonely and deserted in their depots to be needed again. We wrote them a song “Major Claus” and the video was clicked more than a million times - even though the strike was over the following day. You can find the video on our Facebook page.

We also had a reason to rejoice with the entire Speicherstadt, Hamburg’s ancient warehouse district, on July 5th: It has been officially claimed as world cultural heritage. We made a video together with many people living in places with other world cultural heritages to welcome the Speicherstadt among these: see Video on YouTube.

On September 10th the moment had finally come: we broke our own world record of “the biggest model railway in the world”. In the presence of Marco Fregatti, Judge from the Guinness book of world records, we inserted the bridge between our existing site and the new Italy theme world, which is still under construction. The total length of kilometers increased from 13 to unbelievable 15.4 (real!) kilometers.

Only a few weeks later we finished the first part of the new theme world: The coast of Amalfi, a landscape abruptly rising from the coast with many narrow valleys and meticulous detail work unprecedented in Wunderland. Never before have we invested this much work into a new construction site, as we are doing now in Italy and we are even more curious to see it, once it is all ready. 

The already existent theme worlds also gained other attractions. On November 3rd we opened a 1:87 scale model of the Tagesschau news studio and it was inaugurated by news anchor Jan Hofer. In preparation the real news team had produced a special news edition in their real studio regarding several subjects relevant to inhabitants of the Wunderland. This news show is now to be seen on the push of a button at Miniatur Wunderland. You may also see the news here: YouTube

Only a few days after this, on November 9th, thousands of people gathered in the Hamburg Stadtpark to participate in yet another event planned by Gerrit and Frederik Braun. Together they formed the “Largest shaped by Humans Olympic Rings” and with this set yet another sign for the devotion to the Olympic Games in Hamburg. It also turned out to be the third Guinness World Record of the year. 

Another two days later than that we could finally reveal what had kept our model building department so busy for the weeks leading up to this event: a model of the Berlin Olympic Stadium with a concert of German pop star Helene Fischer on stage.  Helene herself presented the stadium to the press, assisted by TV host Johannes B. Kerner, and revealed the idea behind it. The Wunderland wants to raise money with the help of Helene Fischer for the German aid organization “Ein Herz für Kinder”. The 57,000 seats in the miniature stadium are for sale for a good cause. On the page you can pick an avatar, place it in the virtual stadium and our model builders will place a real figurine as a replacement into the concert for you. It is also possible to buy tickets on location at Miniatur Wunderland and sit your figurine into the stadium yourself. So far we have already accumulated 400,000 Euros of which every penny goes to “Ein Herz für Kinder” to support their work.

At the end of the year we had another anniversary: The 50th edition of Gerrit’s Diary. This format originated from updates of the construction site of Knuffingen Airport and by now has become a dearly loved news update on the technological department of Wunderland, with more than 100,000 viewers. The show was outfitted with a new intro on this occasion. You may watch the 50th edition of the series here: YouTube

And with this a good year at the Wunderland, brimful with events, comes to an end. We enjoy looking back onto this.  In unison we and our team wish you wonderful Holidays and a lovely transition into the New Year. We’ll be waiting to see you over there!