Backnang

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Backnang is a town in Germany, in the Bundesland of Baden-Württemberg, roughly 30 kilometers northeast of Stuttgart. Its population has increased greatly over the past century or so, from 7,650 (1900) to 35,761 (2005).

Backnang was ceded to Württemberg by the Baden (Zähringer family) in 1325. Backnang was known as Gerberstadt due to several tanneries and leather factories, and woollen and cloth mills. These have vanished nowadays, and telecommunication companies like Ericsson (formerly AEG, Telefunken, ANT, Bosch and Marconi) and Tesat-Spacecom followed. It has an interesting church named Stiftskirche, formerly the church of Backnang Abbey, dating from the 12th century.

The cultural highlight is the annual Strassenfest during the last weekend in June. Founded as a street festival, in which the local sports and cultural clubs offered drinks and foods. The traditional opening starts with cannonshots from the picturesque city tower at 6 p.m. on Friday and ends with the Zapfenstreich Monday at 11 p.m. Usually the Strassenfest attracts more than 100 000 spectators over its four-day duration.

Another cultural highlight is the annual Murr-Regatta organized by the Jugendzentrum and usually held two weeks after the street festival. The Regatta is a race down the river with self-made boats. Besides the prize for the fastest boat, an environmental prize is awarded to the crew that collects the most rubbish, an originality prize is given to the most creative crew, and a drunkenness prize to the most inebriated crew.

Remarkable is the local Jugendzentrum (youth centre). Self administered for more than 30 years, it hosts numerous concerts and contributes with events to the cultural life of the city.

Contents

International relations

Backnang's twin towns include:

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