The 18th century fair traditions are reviving in Zelvenshchyna. Ann’s fair was held in the city. Every year the holiday brings together artisans, traders and artists from all over Belarus.
As always, the fair started with a bright theatrical performance. The guests of the holiday were greeted by the prince Sapieha and his wife, who organized about three hundred years ago Ann’s Kirmash – at that time one of the largest in Europe. Columns of dancers in national costumes paraded along the main square, gypsy girls circled in color skirts, and circus performers on stilts danced from the heights of the spectators.
The central part of the urban settlement was divided into thematic zones – exhibition, handicraft, commercial, gastronomic, theatrical, historical and others.
A lively trade unfolded on the craft site. Not only local craftsmen came to kirmash. The handmade products were presented by craftsmen from Minsk, Grodno, Slonim, Volkovysk, Schuchin, Berestovitsa … The geography of the participants is impressive. However, as the range of products. For every taste! You could buy toys, knitted items, leather goods, wood, clay, jewelry, paintings. Between the malls no one passed by. If only because the artisans conducted master classes. Where else, if not at the fair, could one see the forge of a blacksmith’s coin, making yarn from yarn on a yoke, pottery?!
A real gastronomic feast unfolded at the food court. Here one could find delicacies for every taste: lard, honey with various additives, unleavened bread and snails. Going around all the merchants, they gathered some interesting facts about the products being presented.
According to Vladimir Rabkov, a seller of French delicacy, grape snails can be eaten by everyone without fear – the mollusks are hypoallergenic. Honey with drone milk is a universal product. “It benefits both men and women,” says Lyudmila Pavlyuchik, the mistress of the farm house “At the Khutarskaya Tsishy”. In the first case, it is a natural remedy for potency, in the second – for skin rejuvenation. Did you know that the caloric content of melted fat goes off-scale – about 900 kcal per 100 grams. While the average daily consumption of calories for an adult is about 2500 kcal. “I ate a slice of bread in the morning with thickly buttered bacon and you don’t remember about food before dinner,” says Sergey Bartosh. “It turns out that lard is tasty, satisfying and economical.”
Moving on. And to meet us – britzki with Gypsies, Ukrainians and oriental beauties. Traditionally, Kirmash chose the best carriage. This year four competitors competed for the championship. The jury appreciated the design of the carts: creative and unusual approach was welcomed. Attention was paid to self-presentation. The participants prepared small numbers in Ukrainian, Gypsy, Oriental and Belarussian manners.
In the Middle Ages, the members of the Annensky Kirmash were moved by the members of the historical reconstruction club “Livet” In the park area “givoyty” pitched camp. They offered Zelventsi and guests of the kirmash to participate in the ancient amusements, to hold a weapon in their hands, to try on armor. Adults and children enthusiastically watched the cavalry fun. Riders demonstrated skillful riding, while they managed to perform various stunts with the help of a spear and a sword. It was just breathtaking from knight battles. As in the old days, one of the spectators tied a ribbon to the winner of the tournament. And the hero “to his lady of the heart” dedicated the victory. And the gallant knights told a lot of interesting stories, covered with a romantic veil of the Middle Ages.
Well, and what a fair without music and spectacles? The program of Annensky Kirmash was decorated with the performance of local and visiting artists. With stormy applause, the audience was greeted by the ensemble “Old Man Ataman” from Minsk, as well as the dancers of the Latvian creative team and the Brest Fantasia. I liked the concert of the string quartet “Astorio”, the metropolitan art group “Belarusians”.
The holiday ended with a spectacular salute! Goodbye, kirmash! See you again!