Every year we go to the country – to get green!
Since 2012, all kreuzwerkers plus partners and family have been invited somewhere beautiful from Friday to Sunday. The one and only purpose: to connect, and to get to know each other better. Everyone’s welcome. And although it’s never everyone, it’s always very, very many. The Landpartie is an institution and has a regular spot on the calendar of many kreuzwerker households.
Our Office Management and People & Culture staff are responsible for scouting locations, and even though there has never been a repeat location, it’s always been a hit. Of course - Berlin’s surrounding countryside is a perfect place for this. There you’ll find undeveloped nature and uncongested areas that the rest of Germany can only dream of! However - with kreuzwerker rapidly increasing in size, it’s becoming more and more demanding to discover truly individual locations, which are not business hotels or just gussied up locations.
This September our Landpartie took place at the Fleether Mühle near Mirow, once again in the Mecklenburg Lake District.
The premises are huge and there is one kilometer of beach that is ideally suited for water sports enthusiasts, nature lovers and those who need to getaway.
Fleether Mühle offers a wide variety of accommodations - from “hotel” to "glamping;” there is something for everyone. And given our large number of participants, we use them all. A nice hall in the middle of the site is the central contact point for food and drinks. It’s easy to find each other here and it provides a cozy place to hang out in case of bad weather.
Overall, we were lucky with the weather - however, September was COLD… everything is always relative.
Because working remote and the growth in Frankfurt and Warsaw means that chance meetings in the office or at our more private events in Berlin and Frankfurt are no longer enough, this year’s “Landpartie” offered a unique way to get to know new kreuzwerkers. It’s just another great reason to all meet at the Fleether Mühle. What does this mean for the future? We will evaluate and see.
(Almost) the same procedure at the Landpartie as every year:
Friday afternoon, the group gradually assembles. When the first arrive, everything is already perfectly prepared; our advance team has been active for hours (Tanja, Anne, Dewi) and no time is lost. The program starts immediately: entertainment, drinking, eating, entertainment, drinking, eating, entertainment, drinking, eating… Until late into the night…
On both evenings there was an XXL (no, make that: XXXL) campfire, and a wood-fired, mobile sauna parked directly on the lake, along with the whole accompanying shebang.
Saturday is always “program day” – but what everyone really wants to do is just to sit around and talk. But give into that and it would get boring. So - with eyes shut, we jump into the myriad of activities. There’s no official obligation to do so, of course; it’s a purely recreational event. Still, there’s always some kreuzwerkers who stoically resist the peer pressure every year. Hats off!
On Sunday morning, after a late, hungover breakfast, there is the traditional group photo, and with that, the formal agenda is over. Those who have time use the afternoon to explore the area before heading back to Berlin, Warsaw, Munich, or Frankfurt.
The culinary provisions are particularly worth noting. We’re a little strenuous in this regard, organic, vegan/vegetarian, very little meat, etc.; it’s even tricky for us to host ourselves, let alone be hosted by others. Here, however, the staff were great, very motivated; treating us to extremely tasty dishes, and fulfilling all of our wishes. The management and all the Fleether Mill staff deserve a big compliment!
Again, a great time!
Nice to know (Wikipedia):
The mill was built in the 13th century by the Eldena monastery on the Driculne stream and was first mentioned in a document in 1270. From 1692 to 1799 it was owned by the Monike family. The 4-story mill building in the style of classicism was built in 1802 according to the plans of the country architect Friedrich Wilhelm Dunckelberg. The three-sided farm also included a horse stable, a barn and a bakehouse, which later functioned as a smithy. A sawmill was built on the other side of the Oberbek. The mill wheel, which still exists today, is four meters in diameter.
In GDR times, the mill site was used for poultry breeding. There were five halls where animals were raised, a 6-apartment block, and an apprentice and training building. Until the 1950s the mill was still able to grind grain, but due to the change of technology it was put out of operation. Thus, the Fleether Mill became a compound feed mill. Originally operated by waterpower, the mill was equipped with an electric motor. The sawmill, however, continued to be operated with waterpower until 1990. As early as 1922, the Fleether Mill was also able to store electricity on accumulators.
Arson in August 2001 destroyed the sawmill and severely damaged the mill. The remaining structure was demolished in 2015 so that a new weir could be built. The buildings are all classified as historical sites.