Wonderland Kalkar on Wheels 2022 kicks off

Wonders on wheels
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Powerful trucks for seriously ill children

“Wunderland Kalkar on Wheels” will be held again on May 28. Sick and disabled children are allowed to ride in large trucks. 700 vehicles are expected to attend the Synchronized Trucker Festival.

Riding on a really big truck, bypassing jubilant crowds, through towns and villages – being the one time ‘King of the Country Road’: maybe this is a great experience for every child, but especially for kids whose normal daily lives are mainly in a hospital room full of medical devices and who struggle With their parents a tough fight against their disease. “Wunderland Kalkar on Wheels” (WKOW) is the name of the event that takes 100 seriously ill and disabled children on a high ride in the trucker’s cabin. The event had to be halted for two years due to the pandemic, but will now take place again on Saturday, May 28, in the outer area of ​​”Wunderland Kalkar” on Griether Straße. and on a circuit of approximately 65 kilometers between s-Heerenberg, Emmerich and Kalkar. “It can’t be considered achievable again, because only so many volunteers make it possible,” says event director Bem Groot Obenk, who took over WKOW. He and his team are very happy about that.

Apparently, the truck drivers were also eager for the charity event, because all 100 truck spaces were taken just ten minutes after the registration portal opened. The reason for WKOW’s popularity becomes clear when people who have already participated in it or experienced it as viewers speak up. “It’s so nice to have such a happy, laughing kid by your side,” says truck driver Paul Lemkin. Trucker Pepe is also excited about it. He participates regularly and reports that the chiefs of the carriers are also happy to allow their drivers to share in their vehicles. Then the tours are planned in such a way that loading and unloading work exactly. It’s Germany’s third largest trucker’s festival, and for us drivers, it’s simply about the heart,” says Bibi.

Calcar Mayor Britta Schultz is the sponsor of the event. She impressively reported how great the weather is as the convoy of trucks drives through the inner city center of Kalkar, how many people are waving to the kids and how they are waving back. “You can really see what’s important to truck drivers here,” she asserts. “And what a paradox: ‘strong men’ drive sick kids and treat them like raw eggs.” Few who have witnessed this can contain their feelings. “It would definitely be an emotional thing,” asserts Manon Luke Brown of Emmerich’s Business Development Division, where he leads the entourage along the Rhine promenade. Loock-Braun: “It would be a delicate act of drivers, but convenient. The people of Emmerich will welcome children with flags, balloon artists and many onlookers.” This is also the case in the villages of Greth and Netterden (Netherlands), Es Herenberg (Netherlands), Wissel and Hönnepel. Josefa Hartjes de Ruyter from Wessel has been with us for years. “It’s really touching how kids with cancer live such happy moments on the trucks,” she says. Parallel to the trip, a Truckers Festival will take place in the outdoor area of ​​Wunderland from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. In addition, more than 700 other trucks worth seeing, some with more than 600 horsepower under the hood, have already announced their arrival.

There is live music, food trucks, a rubber castle, and plenty of booths. All proceeds go to the Children’s Cancer Clinic in Dusseldorf and to the ‘NOAH4all’, ‘Happy smile’ and ‘Heartbeat’ foundations. Trucker games are new this year, and the “Toughest Trucker Team” has been awarded. Entry to the festival is free for visitors. The truck train is expected to return around 2:15 p.m., when the kids who were on the truck can visit the Kearney family park for free with their parents and siblings.

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