Events / Festivals


(2) Vino Festival

I wonder, whether it will be easy to find a place in Europe where it is still carried on the old tradition of wine-creation patterns. Accompanied by the song, unshod squeezing the juice  from grapes …

IMG_6762_MG_6576_2  Mediterranean climate is very favorable for grape growers. Sicily, an island located in the West of Italy is far separated from the mainland, and is protected from the sharp fluctuations in climate change. Its temperate climate is propitious for wine makers who have created a special wine recipes in Sicily, which is not anywhere else in the world. Sicilian wines have particularly delicate flavor. Even red wines, produced in France and Spain, which are characterized by a sharp taste – Sicilian wines do not show this. Needless to say, it is thanks to the favorable climate of the Mediterranean basin.

Sicilian endowed with a quick temper will not stand aside waiting for an invitation. Wine Festival that takes place once a year, after the crop is harvested, brings together wine producers from all over Sicily’s  neighborhoods. Not need to be a special expert to say definitely, there are no wines that taste would be like. The table is served with  new and old wine recipes, and even century-old wines, which are like jelly. Of wine testing and its rich range of varieties can be thoroughly turn giddy.

_MG_6590The early morning hours, a small village Piedemonte Etneo  in central part of Sicily, begins a lively buzz. Are built stage for musicians, a small shops in which to test and buy fresh products. However, among the whole range of products that are presented, the main product is wine, which is also expressed by the festival’s name – the Wine Festival.

The men in the village main street, occupies the best position to launch one of the most interesting attraction, – wine barrel rolling. Participants will be given the task, move the wine barrels from one street corner to the next. Along the cobbled streets, it is quite a difficult task, and it happens that barrel sometimes roll in to spectators crowd. Followed by cheers and encouragement… , the participant continues roll the barrel ahed.

The biggest festival splendor however is a parade march, where wine producers gathered from near and far neighborhoods. By dancing and singing they show their joy for the work done, supplemented by gestures and colorful national costumes of their region. And as always, the opening of the festival is entrusted to the mayor and one of the first lady, who slowly  start marching at the forefront.

Like wine varies in taste and flavor, depending on the region where it is produced, in the same way differs county folk costumes and dancing temperament. It will not be difficult to discern the differences among the participants, who have come from northern areas of Sicily, where the yield is modest, however, the emphasis is on the specific taste of the wine, which is also expressed in performances. Dancing is like an expression of the entire wine production process. From the vast vineyards, the winemaker walks around and caresses bunch of grapes and by looking at the sky, worships favorable weather. Until the grape harvest and wine fabrication process.


IMG_6836And finally, the jubilant gestures of good wine harvest, which proves the richly served store shelves on the main street. A theatrical performance is presented to visitors to showcase, how wine is made from the very beginning. Although it is a miniature, but gives a good insight to follow its creation process.

Once the grapes are picked and baskets were delivered, they are dropped into a special place on the podium. Grapes stack is trimmed and then begins the main thing – the grapes’ pressing, with musical accompaniment. In remote villages it is done barefoot, while here in a center of village you can see some exception. Squeezed juice flows through the special trays, that blend together, and are collected in a glass container. This is how the squeezed juice begins the path, that later becomes the wine and continue the ripening process, which lasts several years.

P.M. Sicily

(1) Blow wind, blow! Labu ceļa vēju! Goed vaart! Gladko! Bom velejar! Jevk seiling! Silea purjehdus!

Such wishes from family, friends, receiving sailors going offshore. Full sail with the wind, for a seafarer is very important. But this time, ignoring the weather forecaster predicts, all the winds of the world have decided to change direction and started to blow the boats, both large and small in one direction to Amsterdam.


Guard of honor accompanied by the sound of solemn march, yachts and sailing boats finally anchored in the heart of Amsterdam.

In the evening when the fireworks and smoke enveloping the city, called out the first toasts for a happy return, the first day of the parade has opened.

After a long journey from Europe and the rest of the world, sailors begin to anchor their vessels. The first steps on the land has been slow, and someone still manages to go staggering, as suffering from seasickness. Longer, and the onwards journey had made large sailing ships, as Zr.Ms. Zeeland, Colombia, Sedov, MUR, Kruzenstern, Dar Mlodziezy and others, who had to cross the choppy ocean water.

_MG_8892Now these sailing vessels, – giants, are anchored in the very center of Amsterdam and open to visitors. Already on the first day, visitors’ interest provoked by the world’s largest sailing ship, which boasts a professor Sedov name. It Huge sail size leaves a grand impression. Young Russian Navy trainees here get the first baptism of fire. By a rope ladder they need to climb up to the first, second and even third warp-mast to skip sails. This is a head-giddy height, and during  strong winds, the trainees gain a good hardiness.

_MG_8522This is their first sea trip to the Western European city – Amsterdam, which boasts excellent sailors, about what they have just heard. Boatswain of SEDOV (RUSSIA), requires trainees to stand in one rank, and by issuing passports warns them with strict instructions; not to drink alcohol in public places, not to use drugs, walk  in small groups.., if you violate discipline, then this will be your last visit to Amsterdam.

_MG_8538_MG_8540_MG_8515If such a huge sailing ships you will encounter in the open waters, its dimensions not seems quite impressive. However, a completely different picture of its size occurs when it sails slowly along the canals of Amsterdam. The mast ends extends over high-rise buildings and small boats around, with curious tourists, form peculiar contrast.

Stepping on board may notice, that the ship quickly needs a cosmetic repair. Here and there you can see the rust stains. However, the team’s mood it does not interfere. All rigging are positioned accurately, and at the captain’s cabin on the message board, you can get acquainted with the team members’ names and responsibilities at the appropriate time. On board you can meet students from all over the world. Different religions and ethnic groups form a common language. It does not ignore any denomination, and everyone can find his own prayer corner and time. About Sedov sailing ship history, any cadet will be proud to tell you something.

On the Colombia cross masts, like a chicken on battens, stand sailors who impresses with bright costumes and greet townspeople. Sailing Ships Parade in Holland is organized every four years. It brings together, including unregistered sailing boats, hundreds of participants. The big sailing ships anchored in the day before, while smaller boats, sail back and forth through the canal, delighting spectators. It is also happening when the show ends. Small boats leave the port first. After the road is free, large sailing ships are leaving the port. We wish, full sails with wind!

Tall Ships

  1. Elbe                                                                                                                                                              _MG_8646
  2. Eendracht
  3. RWS1
  4. Duet
  5. KIM
  6. White Dolpin
  7. Zr.Ms. Zeeland
  8. Stad Amsterdam
  9. Alexsander von Humbolt II
  10. Santa Maria Manuela
  11. Esmeralda
  12. Gotheborg
  13. Half Moon
  14. Sagres
  15. Gloria                     _MG_8572_MG_8455
  16. Guayas
  17. Christian Radich
  18. Rara Avis
  19. Bel Espoir
  20. Nao Victoria
  21. Zr.Ms. Urania
  22. Wylde Swan
  23. Etoile du Roy
  24. Rupel
  25. Kamper Kogge
  26. Young Endeavour
  27. Statsraad Lehmkuhl
  28. La Cancailse
  29. Sedov
  30. Dar Mlodziezy                                                                       _MG_8446_MG_8488
  31. Nadezhda
  32. Zr.Ms. Bruinvia
  33. Europa
  34. La Grace
  35. Belem
  36. Zr.Ms. De Ruyter
  37. Mi
  38. Atyla
  39. Johanna Lucretia
  40. Kruzenshtern
  41. Gladan
  42. Maybe
  43. Mutin                                                                                                                             _MG_8341
  44. Naaldwijk                             _MG_8358
  45. Roemond
  46. Pogoria
  47. Tarangini
  48. Iskra
  49. George Stephenson
  50. Elfin
  51. Hercules
  52. Scheelenkuhlen
  53. Hugo
  54. Roek
  55. Y8122
  56. Maarten
  57. Dockyard
  58. Furie
  59. Abal tasman
  60. Duikvaartuig
  61. Sleepboot Kon. Marine
  62. Team Brunel
  63. Ecolution


P.M. Amsterdam