Officials in Austria and Bavaria are today faced with a further complication of having thousands of migrant guests - how will they, and especially the young ones, react to the running of the black devils during the traditional seasonal Krampuslaufen?
They have Krampuslauf clubs in the same way that we have Morris dancing, except that in place of bells, sticks, ribbons and pig bladders they have horns, teeth, matted fur, chains and blood-red eyes of fire. However, Bavarian social workers have speculated that Afghan or Pakistani kiddies, brought up on Taliban lullabies and Sharia bedtime stories, will be scared shitless by these demonic folk-creatures. One club, the Steindorf Black Devils, near a refugee camp near the Ossiachersee in Austria claims it has been asked to cancel this year's devil run.
Club members have offered to go in costume to meet the migrants in the daytime prior to the torch-lit procession. So far, the offer has been declined by the social workers.
Chairman of the Kärnten Heritage Society Wolfgang Lattacher suggested putting up posters in migrant languages "that this is an old tradition with us, and they need not be afraid".