Fall of the Berlin Wall: Preps ahead of 25th anniversary

Germans were working overtime to prepare for Sunday’s commemoration of the fall of the Wall

(CNN) – People are once again gathering around what they brought down 25 years ago – the Berlin Wall. This time, tourists from around the globe time their visits to Berlin as celebration preparations cut through the city.

Pieces of the so-called “border of light” are set in place. The lights mark where the Berlin Wall once not only divided a nation, but entirely surrounded West Berlin.

German tradesmen were working overtime at Berlin’s iconic Brandenburg Gate to prepare for Sunday’s commemoration of the fall of the Wall. All around the city, the pieces to a so-called border of lights were being set in place, and visitors from around the world were right where they wanted to be.

The German capital was engaged in a united effort that will reflect on the courage it took to win freedom a quarter century ago.

Huge scaffolding will allow hundreds of journalists from across the globe to cover the event, and shelter the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra as well as guests and dignitaries. It’s a monumental job in itself.

Among the features against this backdrop are thousands of illumination stands being set in place along the path where the Wall once stood as it not only divided a nation, but entirely surrounded West Berlin. Balloons will be placed atop these stands and then released during the commemoration event.

Thousands of people have timed their visits to Berlin to coincide with the anniversary and witness it for themselves.

Chinese, Italians, Americans and many others were already arriving and searching out what remains of the Wall, particularly along the brightly painted east side gallery that is of the longest segment of the original Wall that still stands. Painted by artists from all over the world, most visitors agree this alone is worth a second look.

The current list of the dignitaries is really quite short; it includes the president of the European Parliament, German Chancellor Angela Merkel of course, and Former Soviet Leader Mikhail Gorbachev. That is going to make this 25th anniversary of the fall of the Wall very much a people event, the people of Germany, the people who have come here from around the world, and in many ways that is fitting because it is the people who brought down this Wall.

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