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Around Slovakia

Three beers opened in one second
Goulash cup
Witches bring good luck to the fair
Plane crashes at landing
10-year old adopted by Italian couple
The longest hair

Topoľčany
Three beers opened in one second

JOZEF Fraňo who opened three beer bottles in just one second, will be awarded with a triple entry in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Fraňo, 52, from the western Slovak town of Topoľčany, works in the marketing department of the local brewery, the Slovak daily Nový Čas wrote on July 22.
When asked why he developed this untraditional hobby, Frano stated: "My boss Jozef Nemec once told me that three Germans opened 300 beer bottles in one minute and 47 seconds. He also said that he thought it could be done even faster. And he was right; after training on scrap bottles our three-man team broke the four-year-old world record. We opened the 300 bottles in 1:17.73 minutes," Fraňo said to the daily.
Fraňo accomplished his second personal best record last year when he opened 101 beer bottles in one minute.
His most recent record was set on March 4 of this year, when he opened a crate of 20 beer bottles in 6.65 seconds. Therefore, he opened a remarkable average of three beer bottles per second.


Jelenec
Goulash cup

THE FOURTH annual Goulash cup took place on July 31 near the western Slovak town of Nitra.
Richard Hajdin, the founder of the unusual competition, cooked an enormous amount of the traditional thick meat soup dish.
"We lit the fire under a special boiler at nine in the morning. We are cooking a record amount of goulash here - 1,000 portions at once," Hajdin told the Slovak daily SME.
The massive preparation required 120 kilos of meat, 50 kilos of onions and 50 kilos of potatoes. Ten people helped to prepare the ingredients.
Apart from the super-sized pot of goulash, individuals and smaller teams also competed in cooking five liters of the soup. Magda Blašovičová, a professional from Nitra, was among them, accompanied by her four-year-old grandson Maťko.
"We are staying at a nearby cottage and my grandson challenged me to take part. I soften the classic beef goulash soup with some pork, and I add a lot of onions and bacon. At one of the previous annual goulash cup competitions I ranked second with this recipe," Blašovičová told SME.
Proceeds from sales of the goulash were donated to the Cancer Research Foundation.



WHICH witch is which?
photo: SME - Ján Krošlák

Kremnica
Witches bring good luck to the fair

FOR SEVERAL years it has been a tradition that local witches open the annual fair in the central Slovak town of Kremnica. In order to bring good luck to the vendors, they sweep the dust from under every stand and give the marketers a good luck coin.
The witches from Kremnica attend other town events as well, the SME daily wrote. The town now considers the witches to be part of the municipal tradition.
People from the former Friends of Kremnica Association, now called Cremnicium, started the tradition several years ago.
"We are not wicked witches at all; just the opposite. That is why we give candy and balloons to the kids in town. We want to drive those ideas of mean women with warts away from people's heads," witch Mariana Lacková told SME.
This year the fair's biggest attraction was a traditional event called the Vanity Fair. Marcela Andreuttciová (also known as Marcellina by the locals), who claims she is a witch and a seer, was inspired by a classic piece of literature for this event.
The community brings unneeded household items to sell at the Vanity Fair, and the proceeds go to the strucural reconstruction of the Cremnicium and the medieval city archive building.
Everything from an old piece of literature written by Marx, to beautiful antiques appeared at the Vanity Fair this year, as reported by SME on July 26.


Partizánske
Plane crashes at landing

A GLIDER plane crashed while landing on July 19 near Malé Belice village, in the Partizánske district. The pilot, Dušan Zubák from Partizánske, was taken to a hospital with injuries to his spine and a broken leg.
According to the state run news agency TASR, the accident took place at 16:00 during the landing manoeuvre.
"He hit the telephone wires and was thrown to the field," fire fighter Miroslav Januška told TASR. The damage to the plane is estimated at around Sk500,000 (€12,500).


Veľké Kapušany
10-year old adopted by Italian couple

10-YEAR-OLD David Kalo-čan, who spent four years in the foster home Lienka [Ladybug] in the eastern Slovak town of Veľké Kapušany, may find a new home abroad. An Italian couple decided to adopt David, SME daily wrote. David has two older brothers who were adopted by families who live in Florence, Italy, whereas David's new parents come from Rome.
"For half a year we prepared David to meet his future parents," Mária Fetyková, the head of Lienka home told the daily.
"It took seven months for the Italian authorities to put together all the necessary documents including psychological tests, showing whether we are prepared to admit this new member to our family. Based on those documents a court then decided that we could adopt a child," Giovanni Valgimigli, David's adoptive father said.
"Then it took another six months during which a mediation agency was searching for a child for us, and we finally made our choice from several children. We received a video about David. We liked him from first sight," said Valgimigli's wife Linuccia Zirpoli.
A week after first meeting his new family, David can already speek some Italian words, and is attempting to communicate with his new parents.
The family will first undergo a trial period of living together, which will continue for two weeks in a home rented near Zemplínska Šírava dam.
A court in the north-central Slovak town of Liptovský Mikuláš will then assess the adoption, and if approved, the family can go home to Italy.


Andovce
The longest hair

A GIRL who has never had a haircut prides herself with a mane that is arguably the longest in Slovakia, at 1.7 meters.
At the age of one and a half, Sabina Szabóová, from the Andovce village in the southern Slovak Nové Zámky district, was playing near a burning stove when her hair caught on fire. However, her mother acted quickly and managed to prevent a tragedy.
According to the Slovak daily Nový Čas, Sabina's mother then swore that she would never have the girl's hair cut again, and she kept her word.
Sabina has to wear her hair braided so that it does not drag on the floor. She says she enjoys the attention she gets from her hair.
"I don't make any secrets of the fact that I enjoy it when people turn their heads to look at me. I have got used to the curious looks," she told the daily on July 21.
She says, however, that washing her hair is not always easy. It takes her an hour to wash it and sometimes an entire night for it to thoroughly dry.
Another difficulty with her lengthy locks is that she cannot attend some public pools that require swim caps. Sabina has so much hair that it does not fit under any caps.

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