AROUND SLOVAKIA

More than 20 Slovak cities participated in “Hug Day”

THE IDEA to offer “free hugs” to strangers in the streets first arrived in Slovakia a year ago. In 2013 more than 20 cities and towns participated in the initiative, which took place on June 26. Last year, volunteers exchanged 8,249 hugs, and this year the goal was to exceed this number, preferably to 14,000 hugs.

THE IDEA to offer “free hugs” to strangers in the streets first arrived in Slovakia a year ago. In 2013 more than 20 cities and towns participated in the initiative, which took place on June 26. Last year, volunteers exchanged 8,249 hugs, and this year the goal was to exceed this number, preferably to 14,000 hugs.

“We have prepared the biggest event so far, with about 200 volunteers,” Jaroslav Dodok, the initiator of this project in Slovakia, told the TASR newswire. He added that stressed and busy people of the 21st century tend to forget about their loved ones, about sharing and exchanging embraces, which then become a true rarity.

Dodok said that volunteers visited senior homes as well as kindergartens and hospitals, but also hugged clerks, drivers, cooks and various other people, including passengers on public transit.

The cities offering free hugs included Bratislava, Trnava, Nitra, Topoľčany, Banská Bystrica, Zvolen, Kremnica, Žiar nad Hronom, Detva, Lučenec, Rimavská Sobota, Levice, Dolný Kubín, Poprad, Martin, Nové Mesto nad Váhom, Prievidza, Trenčín, Trenčianske Teplice, Partizánske, Prešov, Kežmarok, and Svidník.

The programme offered different events in different cities: in some it involved only hugs, the SITA newswire wrote, but in Banská Bystrica, for example, a mass hug around a fountain was organised.

“Coordinators in individual towns and cities used their invention and creativity to lure as many people as possible to Hug Day,” Dodok told SITA. “We want people to have good feelings about our event – and nice memories, too.” The recounting of the event on Facebook states that altogether, 58,010 hugs were exchanged on Hug Day.

The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

Owls indicate the spring is coming

Male owls lured by bird calls fly in to take a look at the intruder.

Long-eared owl

“By a sharp knife” cuts through the heart of injustice in Slovakia

A film inspired by the 2005 murder of student Daniel Tupý will be premiered to the Slovak public on February 21.

Director Teodor Kuhn behind the scenes of Ostrým Nožom.

The moment that changed my perception of the media

One flew over the newsprint: Images from the history of the Sme daily

Alexej Fulmek (right) and Karol Ježík in the early days of Sme.