Along the years, the event organized by the Ardennes Memories organization has become one of the major historical re-enactment of World War II in Europe. The growing commitment of hundreds of re-enactors and thousands of onlookers coming from all backgrounds is one of the best proof of its tangible success. The yearbook 2015 of the XXst century living history groups of the Militaria Magazine did not hesitate to note it as a « must see/participate » date in the calendar of major events.
At the end of the commemorations of the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge, Ardennes Memories had however decided to temporarily stop the event. The reason ? An organization that had become way too important to manage for the few volunteers who were the pillars of the show. Today, reinforced and strengthened, the team has decided to reorganize an event for the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge. With a new concept and a sharpened historical dimension, the Hardigny 44’ Project was born !
The villages of Hardigny and Neufmoulin were the theatre of terrible clashes between the units of the Task Force Booth (9th US Armored Division) and reconnaissance elements of the 2nd Panzer Division during the very first days of the German offensive. The sacrifice of the Task Force Booth – along with those of the 2 other Task Forces Rose and Harper - was not vain since it allowed to gain precious time for the 101st Airborne Division to arrive in Bastogne and prepare for the shock to come. With the Hardigny 44’ event, the team of volunteers that we are and the City of Bastogne wish to remember those men who are too often forgotten to the profit of way more renowned units.
To do so, Ardennes Memories is back and ready to put every efforts in the organization of this 2019 edition. In a very authentic scenery where practically every barns and buildings are left untouched since 1944, we are expecting over 250 reenactors from internationally recognized reenactment groups – our reenactors are coming from Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Switzerland, USA,… - and on dozens of German and US vehicles. US M8’s, Halftracks, Stuart tank, Hellcat, 1 original Sturmgeschutz III, several originals and copies SDKFZ 251 halftracks and 1 copy of Panther tank are some of the many vehicles planned for our event. Many more vehicles will certainly join !
A pyrotechnical show will be organized on Sunday December 15th, 2019 at 10.30 AM. The pyrotechnical effects will be managed by a specialist coming from Poland. It is also worth noting that in the days prior to the event, 2 columns of vehicles (armored and wheeled) will be reenacting, in total immersion (open solely to serious reenactors) and on dozens of kilometers though the Ardennes, the journey of the 2nd Panzer Division and the Task Force Booth in December 1944.
To sum up, do not miss this formidable event who will take you back, during a weekend, in the terrible chaos of the last major German offensive of the Second Wold War.
For more information, do not hesitate to wander in the various pages of our website.