In celebration of Easter, Riga invites everyone to watch the awakening of nature and spot the first heralds of spring not only in the decoration of the cityscape, but also in the city's cultural events programme - concerts, sunrise rituals, Easter celebration, and creative workshops.
"To welcome the arrival of spring in the city, Riga City Council has decorated the city accordingly and prepared an extensive programme of events and activities. I invite all residents and visitors of Riga to celebrate the awakening of nature together - by participating in our themed attractions and games, as well as enjoying festive concerts and other creative activities!" says Mayor of Riga Mārtiņš Staķis.
The awakening of man and nature
This year, residents and visitors of Riga are invited to celebrate the spring through the awakening of man and nature. After a dark winter, as the sun slowly begins its triumphal march, not only nature wakes up, but also people, and with them - the cultural life offered by the municipality in Riga.
Posters with images of the first heralds of spring - snowdrops, crocuses and tulips - will colour the city until spring flowers will also be waking up in the city's greenery and in the gardens of residents of Riga.
Posters with spring flower motifs will decorate the city's advertising billboards and columns, and visitors will also find decorated celebration venues - the spring flowers depicted in the posters have already bloomed in the snowy lawn of Bastion Hill, Vērmanes Garden Park and Līvu Square, and on March 20, the lawns will bloom with floral environmental decorations opposite the entrance to the Grand Stage at Mežaparks, in the greenery surrounding the cultural palace Ziemeļblāzma and at the cultural centres Imanta and Iļģuciems. These decorations will be on display until April 21.
Same as in 2022, residents and visitors of Riga will be entertained by the environmental decorations Sun Mills on Doma Square. Six illuminated environmental decorations Sun Groves will also be placed in various neighbourhoods of the capital city at the intersections of major streets.
Between March 20 and April 21, spring awakening will also take place in Lucavsala, where 120 colourful birds will decorate the trees, while further away, the recreation area will feature colourful environmental decorations Going Home in Bloom.
From March 17, an interactive installation of musical instruments dedicated to Easter will be on display at the Riga Culture and Leisure Centre Imanta.
During Easter, residents of Riga are invited not only to attend concerts and Easter events, but also enjoy the swinging. This year, swings will be installed in seven locations in the city centre and in the surrounding neighbourhoods - Lucavsala, Doma Square, Līvu Square, the park of the cultural palace Ziemeļblāzma, the Grand Stage at Mežaparks, as well as the cultural centres Imanta and Iļģuciems.
Awakening of the Sun
Easter is one of the four most important milestones in the calendar year - it is the day when the gates of winter close. This day is full of energy and everyone can feel and experience it by going out in nature and performing rituals with people close to them.
This year, we will wake up the sun together on March 20 at 6.00 AM at three locations - Arkādija Park, Lucavsala and, for the first time - in Zaķusala. The rituals of the Easter Day will be accompanied by folklore groups.
At the eastern end of Zaķusala, behind the Riga Radio and TV Tower, the folklore groups Grodi and Garataka will welcome visitors, the Jasjukeviči family (tradition group "RADI") will perform at Lucavsala Recreational Park, while the Latvian Folklore Society will perform the traditional rituals at Arkādijas Park.
In addition to welcoming the Sun, other ritual activities such as bird-watching, jubilation, dart-throwing, swing decorating, face washing and more will take place.
"Being aware of our roots and folk traditions is especially important now and, above all - being together. There is magic in the welcoming of the Sun and the vernal equinox. Experiencing it, removes the negative energy and recharges with positive energy until the upcoming summer solstice. I invite everyone to get up early in the morning, away with feeling lazy and excuses, dress according to the weather and let the rhythm of nature take over," says Līga Lukašunas, Director of the Culture and Folk Art Centre Ritums.
Easter celebration in Lucavsala and Mežaparks
The biggest Easter event will take place on April 9 in Lucavsala Recreational Park, where both young and old can enjoy folklore groups, swings, egg rolling, making birdhouses, playing games, walking the "Eggeracy Route", as well as enjoy a meal in the picnic area.
Everyone is also invited to attend the various activities and creative workshops at the Grand Stage at Mežaparks, where the Great Egg Colouring will also take place, and in the afternoon, the concert "Joyous Easter Singalong" will take place at the Kokari Concert Hall of the Grand Stage.
On the Easter Monday, the traditional Easter celebration will also take place at the Riga Culture Centre Iļģuciems.
Concerts and other creative activities
Already from 18 March, everyone is invited to attend any concert and other events from our extensive offer in the run-up to Easter. You will be able to enjoy free concerts by choirs, ensembles, orchestras and folklore groups at VEF Culture Palace, Riga Culture and Art Centre Mazā ģilde, Culture Palace Ziemeļblāzma, as well as other cultural centres of the capital. Likewise, events will also take place at the St. John's Church, the Kokari Concert Hall of the Mežaparks’ Grand Stage, and the Concert Hall Ave Sol. On April 7 and 8, the Riga Porcelain Museum will host the creative Easter workshop.
You can find the full list of vernal solstice and Easter events in Riga on https://svetki.riga.lv/ and follow the social media page "Rigā notiek” https://www.facebook.com/RigaNotiek.
Information prepared by: Mārtiņš Vilemsons, Project Coordinator at the Department of External Communication of the Riga City Council, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.