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ĽUBOVŇA CASTLE LURES VISITORS TO FENCING SHOWS, ANTIQUE-GUN COMPETITIONS, CRAFT DEMONSTRATIONS, AND SAUSAGE ROASTING

Top pick: Celebrating Children's Day the old-fashioned way

ĽUBOVŇA Castle, built in the 14th century, and the open-air museum spreading underneath it will play host to the sixth annual festival called Hrad a Skanzen deťom (Castle and Open-Air Museum for Children) from June 3 to 6 in celebration of International Children's Day.
The highlight of the event, renaissance swordplay recalling part of the castle's history, will be performed daily at the castle by the 10 swordsmen of the Vikomt group from the far eastern Slovak town of Snina. There will also be a demonstration of old-fashioned teaching techniques at the castle.
"The [Vikomt] group will involve visitors in the [fencing] competitions and give them an opportunity to try out the antique guns. In addition, there will be an archery competition, and people can also try on the armour," says Pavol Sas, the director's assistant.


FENCERS will bring the castle's history to life in early June, to mark International Children's Day.
photo: Slavomír Žilecký

ĽUBOVŇA Castle, built in the 14th century, and the open-air museum spreading underneath it will play host to the sixth annual festival called Hrad a Skanzen deťom (Castle and Open-Air Museum for Children) from June 3 to 6 in celebration of International Children's Day.

The highlight of the event, renaissance swordplay recalling part of the castle's history, will be performed daily at the castle by the 10 swordsmen of the Vikomt group from the far eastern Slovak town of Snina. There will also be a demonstration of old-fashioned teaching techniques at the castle.

"The [Vikomt] group will involve visitors in the [fencing] competitions and give them an opportunity to try out the antique guns. In addition, there will be an archery competition, and people can also try on the armour," says Pavol Sas, the director's assistant.

Many other activities will take place in the castle. Besides demonstrations of sports dating from the 16th and 17th century, there will also be some knight's games for children.

Additionally, folk architecture and craft demonstrations will be presented at the open-air museum, situated 200 metres from the castle.

"Old-school 19th and 20th century artisans, such as carvers, basket makers, and potters will showcase their skills," says Sas, adding that the visitors can also ride the horses and relax in the surrounding forest, roasting sausages over a fire.


A BIRD'S-EYE view of Ľubovňa Castle, built in the 14th century.
photo: Slavomír Žilecký

"This area is significant for its rich mix of cultures - Slovak, German, Goral, Ukrainian, Ruthenian, and Jewish. Artefacts from these cultures are [permanently] on display in the open-air museum," says Sas.

The five-hectare open-air area also includes a forestry house, mill, wood-carver's workshop, and a rare wooden church from the 19th century, altogether 28 examples of traditional architecture.

"The open-air museum is very significant because even though it is not one of the oldest ones in Slovakia, its location is exceptional [because of its connection with the castle]. [The castle] is the only institution that has an open-air museum situated like this," explains Sas.

The event will run from 9:00 to 18:00 between June 3 and 6 in the castle and open-air museum of Stará Ľubovňa (northeast of Poprad). Tickets for both castle and museum activities cost Sk70 for children and Sk90 for adults. Parking is possible at the castle. For more information call 052/432-2030 or visit http://hrad.lubovna.sk.

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