, or "Straw Bear," is a common character in German carnival processions in parts of southern Germany. In Heldra in the state of Hesse, men dressed in straw costumes parade through the village of 500 as Strohbären every Ash Wednesday to drive the winter away and mark the end of the carnival season. The straw bear costumes can be up to five meters (16 feet) tall. More than 400 people attended this year's parade.
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