About 250 guests - family, friends, current and former employees and representatives from the cultural, economic and political worlds, came to Schloss Callenberg, near Coburg, yesterday to wish Prince Andreas of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha a very happy 70th birthday.
After greeting his guests in a receiving line, Prince Andreas took the microphone in his hand.
"I an really glad to know that so many have come. This shows me that I have not done a lot wrong in life, and I have gained a few friends." Much to his elder son, Hereditary Prince Hubertus' amusement, Prince Andreas, known for being technologically savvy, used a tablet to read his speech.
Prince Hubertus admitted that he more old-fashion, and prefers paper. He thanked his "old man" for "making me take over the head of the family foundation" in 2012, as agreed, allowing me to go my own way."
Prince Andreas had built up the family business, securing a comfortable financial future for the family.
Coburg's mayor Norbert Kastner also praised Prince Andreas for his work "beyond the city limits." He spoke of the Prince's contributions to Coburg, his gentle values, and he concluded with sharing the congratulations of all Cioburg's citizens.
The Coburg Hunting Association honored the Prince, a "keen hunter," with a three-gun salute and a serenade from a hunting horn.
A more formal event in honor of Prince Andreas' 70th birthday will be a private family gala on June 15 at Schloss Callenberg. Guests from all over Europe (and probably a few American cousins, too) will be attending.