Foreigners: Top 10 February events in Slovakia

It is time to play games, try horn sledging, explore romantic stories at a castle this month, or take part in one of the many happenings in regions around Slovakia.

Radim Vizváry is a successful Czech mime, who performs in Banská Bystrica on February 28,2019Radim Vizváry is a successful Czech mime, who performs in Banská Bystrica on February 28,2019 (Source: Mime Prague)

Ball season is in full swing in Slovakia. You can literally find people dancing in every town. For example, miners hold their own mining ball in Banská Štiavnica in mid-February. But if you are not in love and have got no tuxedo or gown, February does not have to be just about love and formal dances.

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Here is a list of the ten best events, which will be taking place across the month:

  1. PARTY/FILM: LGBT+ parties & Queer Café, February, Shanghai Club & Tabačka Kulturfabrik, Vrútky & Košice
  2. DISCUSSION: Intercultural Evening: The (Un) Known USA, February 4, Trafačka, Nitra
  3. CONCERT: Multi-instrumentalist Adam Ben Ezra, February 6, Blue Note Jazz Club, Nové Mesto n. Váhom
  4. PARTY: DJ Ben Nicky, February 9, Ministry of Fun, Banská Bystrica
  5. FAMILY: Eskimo Weekend under Lomnický Peak, February 9-10, Slope Čučoriedky-West, Tatranská Lomnica
  6. CASTLE TOUR: Valentine's Day in Bojnice, February 14, Bojnice Castle, Bojnice
  7. GAME FESTIVAL: FestHry, February 15-17, Sports Hall, Trnava
  8. SLEDGE RACE: Krňačky, February 23, Jasná Resort, Brezno
  9. PANTOMIME: Radim Vizváry, February 28, Záhrada – Centre for Independent Culture, Banská Bystrica
  10. EXHIBITION: The Fetishes of Today, February, Nitra Gallery, Nitra

1) LGBT+ parties & Queer Café

Slovakia is not Berlin or London., leaving some LGBT+ people feeling somewhat isolated. Shanghai Club in Vrútky, central Slovakia, is the only venue in Slovakia, besides Bratislava, where the LGBT+ community and their friends can regularly enjoy parties. If you travel to Shanghai by train on February 2, you will get free admission. If you turn up in the club disguised on February 8, when LGBT+ Carnival takes place, your costume may be the winning one. How about LGBT+ Valentine's Day? That one is scheduled for February 15 at Shanghai. Besides that, Queer Café is held in Košice once a month where you can watch an LGBT-themed film and meet new friends. The Laramie Project is screened on February 25.

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Place: Vrútky & Košice
Venue: Shanghai Club & Tabačka Kulturfabrik
Date: February 2, 8, 15 (Shanghai) & February 25 (Kulturfabrik)
Time: 21:00 (Shanghai) & 19:00 (Kulturfabrik)
Admission: €2 Tickets are available at the box office.

2) Intercultural Evening: The (Un) Known USA

Another international evening returns to Nitra in 2019. This time, an American student and a handful of Slovaks, who studied in America, will talk about the USA. Will they confirm or refute stereotypes about Americans? If you come, you will learn much more first hand. Scribble your questions about anything related to America, from McDonald's to Trump.

Place: Nitra
Venue: Trafačka
Date: February 4
Time: 18:00
Admission: free

3) Multi-instrumentalist Adam Ben Ezra

A double-bass phenomenon and online sensation. That is what, in part, defines Israeli self-taught multi-instrumentalist Adam Ben Ezra, who plays a show at the beginning of February in Slovakia. He began playing the violin at five and the guitar at nine. Over the years he has added the piano, clarinet, oud, side flute and even beatbox to his arsenal of instruments. But it was the double-bass at 16 that, in fact, changed his life. The Telegraph has even called him a "spellbinding performer". His music incorporates jazz, rock, Latin and Mediterranean sounds.

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Place: Nové Mesto nad Váhom
Venue: Blue Note Jazz Club
Date: February 6
Time: 20:00
Admission: €20

4) DJ Ben Nicky

Benjamin Nikki Reginald Wederell, or simply Ben Nicky, is a DJ from Bristol. He plays the Ministry of Fun in Banská Bystrica at the start of February. He has already played shows at the world's largest festivals, including Creamfields, Paradiso, and Tomorrowland. As well, he is also a music producer, having done remixes for Calvin Harris. Armin Van Buuren has described him as "one of the hardest working artists in the trance scene".

Place: Banská Bystrica
Venue: Ministry of Fun
Date: February 9
Time: 21:00
Admission: €15.30 or €26.30 (VIP)

5) Eskimo Weekend under Lomnický Peak

The "Sled Dogs" event takes place in Tatranská Lomnica, the High Tatras, for the tenth time. In two days, you can enjoy skiing and your children can also participate in different competitions. Fairytales, dog dancing, dog sleighs, or avalanche games, will be waiting for the young at heart. Children who come to Tatranská Lomnica, will also set out on an expedition to the land of ice, from the South Pole to the North Pole. In addition, each child who brings a toy dog will get a present.

Place: Tatranská Lomnica
Venue: Slope Čučoriedky-West
Date: February 9-10
Time: 9:00 – 16:00
Admission: €22/day (child) & €28/day (adult) One-day skipass is included in the price.

6) Valentine's Day in Bojnice

Bojnice Castle belongs to one of the most romantic and the most bewitching sites in Slovakia. This might be why exhibits which conceal romantic stories, like the one about the loves of Earl Pálfi, the castle's last owner, will be on display in the castle on Valentine's Day. Tales about love will be recounted during a romantic evening by guests from the past. However, if you miss the tour, you can also visit the castle over the weekend, between February 15 and 17. The same tour waits for you between 10:00 and 15:00.

Place: Bojnice
Venue: Bojnice Castle
Date: February 14
Time: 18:00 – 20:00
Admission: €11 (evening tour on Valentine's Day) or €1-11 at the weekend (depending on age) Tickets are available at the box office.

7) FestHry

Strategic games, family games, fun games, construction sets, conundrums, table tennis, air-hockey, and chess. The game festival, FestHry, comes back for the tenth time to Trnava's sports hall this February. And that is not all! Children can also enjoy theatre performances, face painting, English classes, dance performances, or bouncy attractions. Get ready, parents. This is not just for your kids to play and but also for you.

Place: Trnava
Venue: Sports Hall
Date: February 15-17
Time: 15:00-20:00 (Friday); 10:00-20:00 (Saturday); 13:00-18:00 (Sunday)
Admission: €3-4 (under 3 years old for free) Tickets are available at the box office.

8) Krňačky

Come and enjoy endless fun on the southern side of Mount Chopok and take part in the international horn sledge race, Krňačky (horn sledge in Slovak), which takes place for the second time at Jasná Resort, near Brezno, central Slovakia. The race starts in Kosodrevina and ends in Krupová, which are both parts of Jasná. In addition to horn sledging, traditional music bands will try to make you dance. To reach Jasná, a ski bus will take you there for free from Brezno. More information can be found here.

Place: Brezno
Venue: Jasná Resort (Kosodrevina-Krupová)
Date: February 23
Time: 8:30-14:00 (the race starts at 12:00)
Admission: €10 (for racers; paid in Krupová)

9) Radim Vizváry

An internationally acclaimed Czech mime will perform his act SÓLO in Banská Bystrica on the last day of February. Vizváry will present classical as well as current poetic and comic works. Though influenced by many mimes and various pantomimes, Vizváry always find his own, unique, way.

Place: Banská Bystrica
Venue: Záhrada – Centre for Independent Culture
Date: February 28
Time: 19:00
Admission: free

10) The Fetishes of Today

An exclusive exhibition that serves a (self) ironical presentation of human weaknesses and deviations in nine acts. Slovak and Czech artists, designers, writers and filmmakers, respond, through their works, to different themes and forms of fetishes, fetishism and fetishisation of contemporary society. You will come across, among other things, cult and magical objects of the past and present or erotic and fashion fetishes at the Nitra Gallery. You can find more information here.

Place: Nitra
Venue: Nitra Gallery
Date: until March 31
Time: 10:00-18:00 (week days), 13:00-18:00 (weekend), closed on Monday
Admission: €2

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