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Latvia weekend events: Color your life

National cold records make sure that most Latvians would rather cuddle up under a blanket than go out to party, but psyched up promoters won't let them - and visitors to Latvia - relax for a split second. We yield to their call, giving you this weekend's events in full color. 

1. The 75th birthday of John Lennon at Doma laukums

From 5 PM October 9 to the evening of October 11, the Dome square will bring messages for peace and understanding as more than 30 bands and musicians will take the stage, performing songs from the repertoire of John Lennon and the Beatles, celebrating John Lennon's 75th birthday.

Entrance is free, and you are encouraged to make donations. The charity concert's proceeds will go towards organizing exhibitions of two young artists – Vera Bondare and Olga Smirnova, a cause the eternally free spirit of John Lennon would have been likely to support.

See the event page on Facebook.

2. Sandpainting and duduk

On October 9 at 7 PM the Riga Congress Center will shimmer with a wonderful combination of sandpainting and world music (repeated at the Daugavpils Culture Palace on October 10 at 6 PM). 

Jivan Gasparyan junior, a virtuoso of the Armenian duduk (doo-dook; Armenian: դուդուկ) will be accompanied by Marina Sosnina's wonderful sand impressions, creating a pristine atmosphere of Armenian song and art. 

Info and tickets: Congress Center eventDaugavpils event. 

See what's in store for you should you visit:

3. Fall in Sigulda

For some, watching autumn at Sigulda has become a sort of a cliche, but you know what? Haters gonna hate, lovers gonna love.

You're very much encouraged to visit Sigulda, one of the most scenic cities in Latvia some 40 kilometers from Rīga, and experience the full colors of autumn and hear the rattling of the leaves... though don't forget to wear a scarf and bring your gloves. Info about hiking trails in Sigulda.

While you're there, be sure to visit the Green market at Raiņa st. 3, starting at 9 AM on October 10 where goods from the harvest along with crafting products await your eager hands.

4. Musical delights

A colorful weekend with events numbering as abundant as the colors of the fall. Impossible to list them all, impossible, but we'll try our best.

The concert bar Laternu stundā (in the hour of the lanterns) will celebrate its 3rd birthday at Brīvības st. 109 on October 10 starting at 8PM with the legendary Latvian act Pērkons

While the Leningrad cafe at K. Valdemāra st. 4 will boast the heavy punk act U-13 and another legendary (though in different circles) act from Alūksne - Sutas dampis - with their friends Leborio on October 9 from 9 PM. The same venue hosts Reinis Jaunais of Band Mango fame - the artist, who has performed in New Zealand and across Europe - will be accompanied by friends - at 9 PM on October 10.

And Nabaklab will host Haralds Sīmanis and Rūsa on October 10, giving visitors a gist of traditional and not that traditional sounds. Hint: invite yourself to the event on Facebook and get inside for €2 instead of €4 - the internet is magic!

The new entertainment club 9. vilnis is also waiting for you at Kungu st. 8 on October 9 at 10 PM in Rīga with a performance by #ImantaDimanta, featuring two talented girls Katrīna Dimanta and Imanta Nīgale who will present you with a typically Latvian evening.

As long as we're on the topic of music, if you love things underground and out of sight, Latvian sludge/punk act Anna Kijevā will perform at the Aptieka bar at Miesnieku iela 1, Rīga on October 10 at 10 PM. Entrance is free. 

You might also want to hear the new release Sintezatoru pludmale (Synth beach) of Mazie smirdīgie kociņi (Little stinky twigs). It was recorded in 2008 and released this week. If you're wondering what the holdup was, it's telling that the new album sounds, musically and lyrically, as drug-fueled as their previous records did... All are equally marvelous though.

Mazie smirdīgie kociņi. Saules māmuļa
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