Jāņi festival in England gathers thousands

With a three-day festival living in tents in the Central England Straumēni grasslands, 4,500 Latvians and other visitors have celebrated Midsummer (Līgo, Jāņi) in Britain. The Bērzes Strazdu festival takes place for the 11th time and this year was the largest celebration outside Latvia.

The three-day program of the Jāņi festival is so extensive to catch everything. The tent areas are is divided into a quiet zone for families and the loud one by the stage where the toughest wait for dawn.

“Well, it was a pretty heavy day yesterday. We drank a bit too much kefir. Too much milk, kefir, and we went to sleep. But it's all very beautiful!” said Normunds Volunss, a visitor to the event.

“There's a different atmosphere. Latvia is Latvia, it seems normal in Latvia. All of England have come here, and everything seems to be like it is in Latvia. All traditions, Latvian music, Latvian bands,” added visitor Kristaps Skujiņš.

“Despite the fact that the cost of living has increased significantly here, we do not feel it at the festival. The number of visitors is still high enough, around 4,500 people have arrived this year and there is no feeling that there are any problems with it,” noted Ģirts Lerhs, general manager of Bērzes Strazdi.

This year has been particularly lucky with the warm weather.


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