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Sunday 15.09.2019 | Name days: Sandra, Gunvaldis, Gunvaris, Sondra

Baltics’ celebrating the Baltic Way, 30 years after historic human chain

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About two million people joined hands across the Baltic states on August 23, 1989, forming a unique human chain to peacefully protest against Soviet occupation. 30 years on Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are holding events to remember the spirit that won freedom for the region.

The Baltic Way 30 events on Friday, August 23.

Concerts, discussion and poetry in Estonia


– 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Baltic Way 30 History Day at the Museum of the Popular Front: discussions, Latvian and Lithuanian folk music concerts, announcement of the winners of the poetry contest «The Spell of Freedom» on Freedom Square, Tallinn;

– 4 p.m. Commemoration ceremony at the Maarjamäe Memorial for the Victims of Communism, 80 years from entry into the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact;

– 7 p.m. – 12 a.m. Opening party of the exhibition «Baltic Way 30: One History, Two Million Stories» (Vabamu) dedicated to the Baltic Way 30 / MRP 80 at Telliskivi Creative City (Vabamu)

Estonian-Latvian border:

– 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. Concert at the Lilli-Unguriņi border crossing point, Estonian-Latvian border;


– 9 p.m. movie night: the screening on the new Estonian history drama Truth and Justice at the Rapla Tammemäe Song Festival Ground.


Metal opera, films and exhibitions in Latvia


– Photography exhibition «The Baltic Way 1989. The Manifestation Turns 30» at the Freedom Square. A photography exhibition from the collections of the national archives of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia.

– Exhibition: Latvia’s Centenary / The Rebirth of Self-determination. The Re-instatement of Latvia’s Independeance (1986-1991) at the National History Museum of Latvia. One of the features is a time-line of the major developments of the late 1980’s. Another focus is on the restoration of the national state symbols as well as changing the historical memory of society during this period.

– 6 p.m. and 8.30 p.m. Baltic Film Days at the Splendid Palace Cinema. The Baltic Film Festival is an initiative, created and jointly organised by the three national cinema institutions – the National Film Centre of Latvia, the Lithuanian Film Centre and the Estonian Film Institute for the purpose of strengthening co-operation between the three Baltic States in the field of cinema and promoting information about each country’s films to its neighbours.

– 10 p.m. «Kurbads. Son of the Mare». A Metalopera at Lucavsala. It received only one performance in Limbaži in the summer of 2017 becoming a cult legend in Latvian culture, enjoying the critical acclaim of both the general public and professionals. Performed by the folk-metal group Skyforger and contemporary dance performers.

Grenctāle, Bauska municipality:

– Twinning event «Brālība. Brolybė. Brotherhood» In Grenctāle, Bauska Municipality. The programme of the twinning event Brālība. Brolybė. Brotherhood includes addresses by local officials, recollections of people involved in arranging the Baltic Way, symbolic Baltic Way – human chain around Grenctāle Culture House, concerts by Latvian and Lithuanian folk music and dance groups and popular musicians a.o.


A marathon, jeeps and new human chain in Lithuania

– 6 a.m. The start of the 28th traditional international marathon The Baltic Way.

«As of August 21, we have 37 runners registered for the relay-type marathon stretching to Tallinn. A total of 75 NATO troops will join the Lithuanian runners in Vilnius, and NATO troops will enter the race in Riga and Tallinn, too. The whole distance will take up nine separate stage, with a total of nine runners completing each of them while the rest of the group will rest on the bus for their next stage of the running. We plan to get to Riga at 2 pm roughly. We will exchange our national flags on the border,» Vidmantas Dobrovolskas, president of the amateur Lithuanian runner association, told BNN.

– 9 a.m. Launch of Jeep Club Lithuania in Vilnius

As many as 6,000 cars and motorbikes are expected to hit the road toward Tallinn in the morning of August 23. «We have invited all Baltic auto clubs to participate in the event and most responded positively. Our first major stop will be around 2 pm at Riga townhall, where the cavalcade will be greeted by Riga mayor. We will hand Latvians the Lithuanian and Estonian national flags, pick the Latvian national flag and we will continue the journey with the flags hoisted on all the cars to Tallinn along with our Latvian friends. In Tallinn, we will do the flag exchange, too,» Nerijus Laurinaitis, president of Jeep Club Lithuania, told BNN.

– Noon. The Lithuanian School Students’ Union invites all to an event at the King Mindaugas Monument, where one will be able to get to know Lithuanian youth organizations and their activities, take part in career development classes, and the little ones will be able to get involved in educational activities prepared specially for them.

– 6 p.m. The event «The Baltic Way is all of us» will replicate the 1989 Baltic Way through a live human chain stretching from the Cathedral Square till the Akropolis Mall on Ukmerges road 10 kilometres away. «As of August 21, we have over 4 thousand participants registered for the chain and we expect other 2 thousand people to join it until the event. We estimate that, with the hands of 6 thousand people clasped together, we will cover the distance of over 10 kilometres,» chairwoman of Lithuania’s Ethnic Culture Care Council, told BNN.

– 7 p.m. The final Baltic Way 2019 concert in the Cathedral Square in the heart of Vilnius. Prior to it, a unique installation made of over 2 thousand radio sets will be opened for all.

«All the radio sets were brought to the places of their collection, the National TV and Radio (LRT) and Vilnius Post. But we will continue accepting them until the very revelation of the unique installation, so the number will certainly go up. Afterwards, the radio sets will be brought to Vilnius’ Park of Europe, where a permanent installation will be built. When erected, it will go 17 meters in height and 20 meters in width. As far as we heard, no one ever created such a unique contemporary artwork, so we look forward to registering the installation with the World Guinness Record Book,» Justina Vaitkevičiūtė, a senior project manager at LRT, told BNN.

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